May 2023

Cutler garden aether

Cutler: Garden (Æther Sound)

Heavily ambient instrumental compositions [DC]

Lully Psyche CVS086

Lully: Psyché (Château de Versailles Spectacles)

Rousset’s lively new version of Psyché offers the listener much pleasure [MP]

Puccini Lescaut PACO201 [RMo]

Puccini: Manon Lescaut (Pristine Audio)

A gramophone stereo classic from the 50s is given yet more lustre by this splendid remastering [RMo]

Rota capello C5466

Rota: Il cappello di paglia di Firenze (Capriccio)

Probably the most charming comic Italian opera since Falstaff in a fizzing studio performance [GF]

tchaikovsky piano bis

Romeo and Juliet – Tchaikovsky on the Piano (BIS)

Extraordinary playing of the highest quality and familiar music shown in a new light [RCh]

Elgar: Symphony 1 (Hallé)

(Déjà Review) An interpretation that underscores the mutual admiration between Elgar and Strauss [CF]

Debussy Jeux Strauss Also Sprach Roth LSO0833

R Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra (LSO Live)

A patchy Zarathustra and a good Jeux, but you’ll find better performances of both elsewhere [ST]

Puccini Turandot Pappano Warner 5419740659

Puccini: Turandot (Warner Classics)

Great sound, conducting, choral singing and orchestral playing, but only one principal singer who really comes up to scratch [RMo]

Briggs Requiem King's College London Delphian DCD34298

Briggs: Requiem (Delphian)

A fine showcase for the music of Kerensa Briggs [JQ]

Flury Orchestral Vol3 Toccata TOCC0643

Flury: Symphonies 1 and 4 (Toccata Classics)

A well recorded, but still little-known composer – well worth investigating [GH]

gavrilov complete dg eloquence

Andrei Gavrilov (piano) Complete Recordings on Deutsche Grammophon (Eloquence)

A release pianophiles will treasure [SG]

Offenbach Robinson Crusoé Opera Rara ORB3

Offenbach: Robinson Crusoé (Opera Rara)

A splendid way to explore some of the composer’s lesser-known operettas [MC]

Poulenc: Stabat Mater (BR Klassik)

An unusual programme, attractive, but somewhat generic performances [PBW]

Mussorgsky Pictures Kuchar Naxos 8.555924

Mussorgsky: Pictures at an Exhibition (Naxos)

(Déjà Review) Commitment … involvement … a feeling of wonder [SA]

Verdi: His Life and Operas (Part 3)

(From the Archive) A conspectus in four parts by Bob Farr

stock chicago pristine

Frederick Stock (conductor) Chicago Symphony Vol. 2 (Pristine Audio)

Schumann and Tchaikovsky symphonies by Stock’s Chicago Symphony make this historic release memorable [GT]

citadel song anakronos heresy

Citadel of Song (Heresy)

Unconventional and innovative, this may offend purists, but I find it beautiful and richly rewarding [GPu]

stravinsky firebird rite decca

Stravinsky: Rite of Spring (Decca)

Impressive Stravinsky from Klaus Mäkelä and the Orchestre de Paris [JQ]

Decca’s Golden Ring – The 2022 Remaster

An overview by Jack Lawson

Humour and Classical Music: Johann Strauss II’s Perpetuum Mobile

by David Barker

icelandic stage chandos isolfsson

Icelandic Works for the Stage (Chandos)

Well-crafted and thoroughly enjoyable music; Viðar is a definite discovery [DJB]

tchaikovsky symphony bernstein

Tchaikovsky: Symphony 6 (Deutsche Grammophon)

Bernstein’s infamous late Pathétique – neither the slowest nor the greatest [LD]

wagner siegfried decca

Wagner: Siegfried (Decca)

Triumph! Rejoice! Victory! Solti’s Ring, at last, as Wagner intended! [PCG]

berlioz symphonie beecham warner

Berlioz: Symphonie fantastique (Warner Classics)

(Déjà Review) One of the classic performances of this symphony [CH]