Latest Music Reviews

Bach On The Well-Tempered Guitar

by David Vernier

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In his notes prefacing the recording, guitarist Daniel Lippel acknowledges the validity of many different approaches to Bach performance practice, and assures his listeners that his own approach, while certainly distinctive, is in no way meant to make a definitive argument–“after all,” he continues, “I... Continue Reading

A Triumphant Triumvirate

by Jed Distler

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Each of the three works that Behzod Abduraimov presents in this program consists of small, strongly individual pieces that ultimately add up to more than the sum of their parts. Abduraimov’s impressive interpretations bear this out; he manages to tap into each piece’s character, while... Continue Reading

Super Sowerby from Cedille

by David Hurwitz

Sowerby

This is a delightful, even astonishing release. It contains early works by Leo Sowerby, the most popular composer of church music in the 20th century USA. The two largest items here were composed for Paul Whiteman’s (of Rhapsody in Blue fame) jazz band. They are... Continue Reading

Video Review: Hänssler’s Heidelberg Haydn Cycle Continues!

by David Hurwitz

HaydnKlum

The Bottom Line: Up and running again under the new leadership of Johannes Klumpp, Hänssler’s Haydn Symphony cycle continues with this fine new recording of Symphonies Nos. 2, 17-20. Check out the video below.... Continue Reading

Yeol Eum Son Swings Kapustin

by Jed Distler

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The best performances of Nikolai Kapustin’s through-composed jazz-influenced works come from that rare breed of pianists who possess both a transcendental classical technique and a feel for jazz time keeping. Yeol Eum Son is one of those pianists. She swings like mad in the Op.... Continue Reading

Big Boxes: Eloquence’s Illuminating Sydney International Piano Competition Collection

by Jed Distler

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Between 1992 and 2016 Cyrus Meher-Homji produced compilations of live, unedited performances recorded during the Sydney International Piano Competition. From this body of work, Meher-Homji has culled 11 CDs’ worth of strong, well-contrasted, and wide ranging programs organized by style and genre. Choices are based... Continue Reading

Gerard Schwarz’s Schubert “Great” Rediscovered

by Jed Distler

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This 1987 recording of Schubert’s Ninth Symphony with Gerard Schwarz leading the New York Chamber Symphony was rediscovered in 2017 by its original engineer Marc Aubort. He and the conductor have edited it for release, and the expression “better late than never” easily applies to... Continue Reading

A Kosenko And Scriabin Program

by Jed Distler

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Imagine that you’re in the mood for some late 19th/early 20th century Russian piano music, and you can’t decide between Scriabin or Rachmaninov. My solution: check out the Eleven Etudes Op. 8 by Ukrainian composer Viktor Kosenko (1896-1938), whose fluidly idiomatic keyboard craftsmanship reveals both... Continue Reading

Big Boxes: Miguel Baselga’s Albéniz Cycle

by Jed Distler

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Miguel Baselga was the first and (I believe) only pianist to have recorded Albéniz’s complete solo piano works, a project encompassing nine CDs. The cycle has been reissued in a boxed set, together with each individual release’s original booklet. It remains a significant catalog milestone.... Continue Reading

Tom Lehrer Prettified

by Jed Distler

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The popular songs that Tom Lehrer wrote, sang, and recorded during the 1950s and 1960s are classics of social and political satire that remain as pithy and relevant today as they were more than a half century ago. Despite their undeniable melodic charm, the words... Continue Reading

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