Handel: Water Music, Royal Fireworks, Etc


This is a fine Handel compilation that provides a nice overview of his orchestral music with brass instruments, as well as his only incidental score (music written to accompany the action of a play). Christopher Hogwood uses the arrangement that Handel made of the Fireworks Music for normal-sized forces, including strings, which were absent from the original. All the music is played with a fine sense of style, and a goodly bit of the "pomp and circumstance" that Handel above all others knew how to capture in music. At two discs for the price of one, this is an extremely good deal. --David Hurwitz


Stravinsky: Les Noces, Oedipus Rex


“Ekaterina Semenchuk...[is] the contralto with the biggest range and lustre since Bernstein's Troyanos, and Sergey Semishkur's Oedipus blends clarion authority with youthful pathos...all the right musical phrases shine through. Even Bernstein's recording can't match it for earthy authenticity.” --BBC Music Magazine, August 2010 *****

“Ekaterina Semenchuk (Jocasta) sounds plummy at first but she and Sergei Semishkur (Oedipus) bring electrifying intensity to the duet where they realise their guilt. Overall this is a double-bill of at times shattering impact.” --Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2010

Prokofiev: Complete Works for Violin


“I have not heard such a beautiful performance of the First Violin Concerto since Itzhak Perlman's 1982 EMI recording, and Ehnes enjoys the advantage of a more natural balance with the orchestra...Ehnes smoothes some of the First Sonata's rough edges...yet its menace and brutality emerge clearly enough...a real winner.” --BBC Music Magazine, December 2013 *****

Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice - October 2013


Tessarini: Violin Sonatas


The 18th‐century Italian Carlo Tessarini has only emerged relatively recently as the brilliant musician and composer that he was (thanks, in part, to an in‐depth study published in 2012). He travelled widely, taking on diverse forms of work, and remaining musically active until a ripe old age – remembered by one of his contemporaries as a “lively 70‐year‐old who still regularly played the violin”.




Fiery And Sublime: The Sources Of Quantz's Inspiration


As well as works by Leclair, C P E Bach, Graun and Blavet, this CD includes a rediscovered work by Quantz.

"For anyone interested in the chamber repertoire for flute in the eighteenth century this should be informative and enjoyable listening. Since the playing is exemplary and the recording quality outstanding it can, however, be warmly commended to more than just those with a specialist interest." --MusicWeb International, August 2011


Boccherini: Quartetti Op.26 per due fortepiani


The reputation of Boccherini rivalled that of Haydn, if the nickname ‘the wife of Haydn’ may be accepted as evidence of contemporary fame. He was a virtuoso cellist and worked first in his native Lucca and then in Vienna, before moving to Paris and thence to Spain, where he seems to have remained from 1768 until his death. There he was in the service of the Infante Don Luis and various other patrons, and was appointed court composer to King Friedrich Wilhelm II of Prussia (himself a cellist, although there is no evidence of his actual presence at Potsdam). He died in apparent poverty in 1805.


Alturas de Machu Picchu


Alturas de Machu Picchu is the seventh studio album by the Chilean band Los Jaivas, released in 1981, and probably the most important and popular of all his discography. In it, the band use the poem by Pablo Neruda, of the same title, published in his book Canto General, 1950. In this poem, the poet sings, captivated by the grandeur of human creation that he witnesses in the ruins of Machu Picchu in Perú, about the glorious indigenous past of Latin America, human misery, death and pain that the majesty often results in those who forged. The poem is one of the most significant of Neruda's poetry, and music composition from The Jaivas has been regarded as brilliant and faithful to the original content of the work.

Shostakovich: Cello Concertos Nos. 1 & 2


“there is little doubt that the present performance of the First Concerto is even more incisive than its predecessor...Petrenko draws out a wealth of fascinating detail from the orchestral accompaniment...The Second Concerto, on the other hand, doesn't convince me to the same extent.” --BBC Music Magazine, July 2014 *****

“the cleanness and accuracy of the orchestral playing bring out in more than usual detail the remarkable economy of the scoring [of the First Concerto]...Mork is more forthright at the opening of [the first movement] than many of his rivals, but his playing is high on emotional content.” --International Record Review, May 2014

Fairouz: In The Shadow Of No Towers; Glass: Concerto Fantasy


"The KU Wind Ensemble has appeared on several other Naxos CDs. It is undoubtedly one of the top such ensembles in the United States, and the talent on display here is of professional quality. Conductor Paul W. Popiel leads crisp, precise, and idiomatic performances, drawing the best out of his young players. Thank goodness for conductors such as Popiel, who keep the wind ensemble repertoire growing, and who encourage innovation. In the Glass, soloist Ji Hye Jung…and Gwendolyn Burgett…are no less impressive." --Fanfare, May 2014

Prokofiev: Romeo & Juliet (Complete Ballet)


“Few can rival Valery Gergiev's pedigree in Prokofiev's music, and he is palpably aware of how this score works in the theatre. His pacing of events is masterly, with plenty of verve and passion… what really impresses… is the tenderness and poetry that are so often overlooked in Prokofiev, and not just in the love music. Gergiev frequently lets the strings and solo woodwind linger in a beguiling, natural rubato, whilst maintaining an architectural grasp of the tragic whole.” --BBC Music Magazine, February 2010 *****

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2011 - Disc of the Year & Orchestral Award Winner
Gramophone Magazine Editor's Choice - March 2010

The Film Music of Miklos Rozsa


“These performances by the BBC Philharmonic conducted by Rumon Gamba, who have many a cinematic credit to their name, carry the conviction of an original soundtrack recording in state-of-the-art sound.” --Gramophone Magazine, May 2014

“This generously filled release is self-commending to every Rózsa fan. They will welcome new recordings of some much loved music but this will also speak to many others who simply enjoy fine, superbly crafted music.” --MusicWeb International, 16th June 2014