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Changed my listening plans a bit...

NP:

Ravel

Le Tombeau de Couperin (original version)
Jean-Efflam Bavouzet, piano


Le Tombeau de Couperin (orchestral version)
Orchestre de la Société des concerts du Conservatoire
Cluytens


From these recordings -




My set of the Ravel Bavouzet has a slightly different cover as the one pictured above is the original issue and the one I own is a reissue.
Two great Ravel sets.
 

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Palestrina
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Gorging on Shostakovich...



“Petrenko and the RLPO have achieved a triumph. The orchestral playing is ripe, detailed, lithe, concentrated and intense.” – The Telegraph on Symphony No. 10
“The final instalment of Petrenko’s remarkable Liverpool Shostakovich cycle is a world-class achievement.” – The Sunday Times on Symphony No. 13
“This is a model of clarity… yet another Petrenko performance to join the greats.” – BBC Music Magazine on Symphony No. 8

 

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Hans Gál: Complete String Quartets (Edinburgh Quartet, Meridian, 2 CD's)

Today and tomorrow the early morning string quartet listening will be from this double CD. Hans Gál (1890 - 1987) was an Austrian composer, pedagogue, musicologist, and author, who emigrated to the United Kingdom in 1938. Quoting Wiki: "His works combine romantic intensity with emotional restraint, and the chromatic harmonies and extended tonality of the pre-serial early moderns with a Schubert-like love of melody, integrated with a polyphonic texture that derives from his lifelong engagement with the works of J. S. Bach. "

Today it is the first CD with the first and fourth string quartet (1916 and 1970). As one would expect, there is a shift in style between these two to a slightly more modern sound (although the 1970 quartet still sounds like something from half a century before - then again, the first has a 19th century sound). Both works are very good. There is also a welcome bonus, Improvisation, Variations and Finale on a Theme by Mozart from 1934.
 

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Chanson d'Amour

Sabine Devieilhe (soprano), Alexandre Tharaud (piano)

Debussy: Apparition - song (1884)
Debussy: Ariettes Oubliées (6)
Debussy: Nuit d'étoiles
Debussy: Romance: L'âme évaporée et souffrante
Fauré: Après un rêve, Op. 7 No. 1
Fauré: Au bord de l'eau, Op. 8 No. 1 (Prudhomme)
Fauré: Chanson d'amour, Op. 27 No. 1
Fauré: Les berceaux, Op. 23 No. 1
Fauré: Notre amour Op. 23 No. 2
Poulenc: Hotel
Poulenc: Les chemins de l'amour
Poulenc: Poemes (2) de Louis Aragon, FP 122
Poulenc: Voyage à Paris
Ravel: Ballade de la reine morte d'aimer
Ravel: Chanson de la mariée
Ravel: Chanson des cueilleuses de lentisques
Ravel: Chanson française
Ravel: Cinq mélodies populaires grecques
Ravel: Là-bas, vers l’eglise
Ravel: Manteau de fleurs
Ravel: Quel galant m’est comparable
Ravel: Sur l'Herbe
Ravel: Tout gai!
 

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Good morning. Mendelssohn below the surface.

Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: String Quartet F minor op. posth. 80

Henschel Quartet



More grip than in op. 44 which disappointed me a very little bit, given the great recordings of op. 12 and op. 13. - After all, imho this is still a very good set. - Next try will be Mandelring, I think ...
 

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Debussy, Mahler, Strauss, Sibelius, Bartók
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Good morning. Mendelssohn below the surface.

Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy: String Quartet F minor op. posth. 80

Henschel Quartet



More grip than in op. 44 which disappointed me a very little bit, given the great recordings of op. 12 and op. 13. - After all, imho this is still a very good set. - Next try will be Mandelring, I think ...
Give the Escher String Quartet on BIS a try. Fabulous performances, IMHO.
 

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Haydn - Piano Sonatas Volume 1

Marc-André Hamelin (piano)


Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 31 in A flat major, Hob.XVI:46
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 35 in A flat major, Hob.XVI:43
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 38 in F major, Hob.XVI:23
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 39 in D major, Hob.XVI:24
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 40 in E flat major, Hob.XVI:25
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 47 in B minor, Hob.XVI:32
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 50 in D major, Hob.XVI:37
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 54 in G major, Hob.XVI:40
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 55 in B flat major, Hob.XVI:41
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 60 in C major, Hob.XVI:50
Haydn: Piano Sonata No. 62 in E flat major, Hob.XVI:52
 

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Pancho Vladigerov: Symphonies and Concertos (Various performers, YouTube)

Over the past week or so I have been playing some works by Bulgarian composer Pancho Vladigerov from YouTube. I liked the CD's I have of his work (shorter orchestral pieces), so I wanted to check out the symphonies and concertos I could find on YouTube. I forgot to make notes of the links and performers, but anyone interested can search for them. Posting my short notes now here, while listening to the last selected work (the fifth piano concerto) - maybe someone is interested. And if not, just skip this post.

Symphony No. 1: a noisy LP transfer that starts nice, but not near the quality of his shorter orchestral pieces. After a few minutes the pops and cracks became too much for me.
Symphony No. 2: a decent work, although very old-fashioned (mid to late 19th century I would have guessed).
Piano Concerto No.1: a quirky piece that I enjoyed listening to
Piano Concerto No.2: Rachmaninoff revisted, almost like a pastiche even. At times a noisy LP transfer.
Piano Concerto No.3: another late romantic style piece (Rachmaninoffesque), but impressive, and with good sound.
Piano Concerto No.4: appeals less to me than the third, although the style is similar.
Piano Concerto No.5: probably the best of his concertos, not just channeling the late romantics. A modern recording would be welcome (this one is a LP transfer from a live concert).
Violin Concerto No. 1: interesting, but firmly rooted in 19th century style.
Violin Concerto No. 2: this suffers from rather awful sound, I stopped listening.

Overall, I found his shorter orchestral works (vivid and colourful) that I have on CD's far more interesting.
 

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"Imaginative orchestrator and supreme colorist, Rimsky-Korsakov, started the symphonic suite Scheherazade in the summer of 1888, spent in the quiet of a remote village of propitious remote district of Luga, at the time when he had just completed the orchestration of Prince Igor that Borodin left unfinished, who died the year before. Probably it was the seductive exoticism of that excellent score to fertilise theatrical creativity of the Russian composer. The superb symphonic suite – it goes without saying – draws inspiration from the tales of the Arabian Nights which penetrated the European culture long ago thanks to the fortunate French Galland, according to a taste for exoticism that went spreading exponentially in music but also in painting and more generally in the western custom since the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries."

 

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Brahms, Symphony No 1 - Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Robin Ticciati.

I have concluded that chamber scale Brahms Symphonies are my (current) preference, thats not to say that I won't listen to old favourites like Klemperer, Giulini, Harnoncourt. Really what I'm trying to suggest is that there is more than one way to make these symphonies sound great - which is why with great works seeking to find the one 'best' recording is pointless.

 

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Amadeus & Vienna

Roberto Scaltriti (baritone)

Les Talens Lyriques, Christophe Rousset


Cimarosa: Il mercato di Malmantile Overture
Cimarosa: Tosto ch'io son venuto a malmantile...A consiglio (from Il mercato di Malmantile)
Gazzaniga: Due baronesse amabili (from L'isola d'Alcina)
Haydn: Acide e Galatea: Overture
Haydn: Coll'amoroso foco (from La fedeltà premiata)
Haydn: Tergi i vezzosi rai (Nettuno)
Mozart: Così dunque tradisci … Aspri rimorsi atroci, K432
Mozart: Hai gia vinta la causa! (from Le nozze di Figaro)
Mozart: Io ti lascio, oh cara, addio, KAnh. 245
Mozart: Mentre ti lascio, K513
Mozart: Rivolgete a lui lo sguardo (from Così fan tutte)
Mozart: Un bacio di mano, K541
Salieri: Torbido mar che freme (from La Passione)
Sarti: Come un agnello
Soler, V M: Dov'è dunque il mio ben?...Vo'dall'infami viscere (from Una cosa rara)
 
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