Editor’s Choice recordings – February 2015

Gramophone Mon 26th January 2015

Editor Martin Cullingford introduces his 12 favourite recordings from the February issue

No 1

JS Bach English Suites Nos 1, 3 & 5

Piotr Anderszewski pf

(Warner Classics)

'There’s a beautifully controlled thoughtfulness, lines explored with illuminating delicacy and a complete confidence in the interpretation. A Bach piano disc to set among the best of recent years.' Read review

No 2

JS Bach Orchestral Suites 

Academy of Ancient Music / Richard Egarr hpd 

(AAM Records) 

'Another fine addition to the AAM’s young in-house label, and what better way than this to showcase the ensemble’s delightfully engaging spirit of collegiality?' Read review

No 3

Vaughan Williams Pastoral Symphony 

Hallé Orchestra / Sir Mark Elder 

(Hallé)

'Continuing to excel in works that feel made for them, Sir Mark Elder and the Hallé offer a richly textured traversal through some of RVW’s most elegiac music.' Read review

No 4

Mozart Serenade No 11. Divertimentos 

Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists 

(Linn)

'These performances wonderfully capture the charm of these Mozart chamber works, each instrument oozing a delightfully unforced sense of personality.' Read review

No 5

Penderecki Chamber Works, Vol 1 

Marek Szlezer pf et al 

(Dux)

'Mostly recent works, these chamber pieces offer an intense and captivating distilled insight into Penderecki’s compositional voice.' Read review

No 6

Chopin Etudes 

Zlata Chochieva pf 

(Piano Classics) 

'The young Russian pianist follows her 2013 Rachmaninov disc with a wonderful set of Chopin’s Etudes, maintaining a beautifully entrancing tone throughout the pieces’ challenges and changes.' Read review

No 7

Mozart Keyboard Music, Vol 7 

Kristian Bezuidenhout fp 

(Harmonia Mundi) 

'Hearing Mozart’s sonatas played so brilliantly by Bezuidenhout on a fortepiano leaves rich scope for unexpected discoveries; a superb addition to the series.' Read review

No 8

‘The Salzburg Recital’ 

Grigory Sokolov pf 

(DG)

'An aversion to the studio makes recordings of Sokolov rare indeed – an extra reason to welcome this live recital from 2008, proof if any were needed of why the pianist is this month’s Icon.' Read review

No 9

‘Au Sainct nau’ 

Ensemble Clément Janequin / Dominique Visse 

(Alpha)

'In defence of highlighting this Christmas disc now, it’s only just Epiphany as I write; anyway, this entertaining feast of music-making will bring much delight whatever the season.' Read review

No 10

Veracini Adriano in Siria 

Soloists; Europa Galante / Fabio Biondi 

(Fra Bernardo)

'Veracini was best known as a violinist and composer for that instrument. The dramatic contrasts and theatrical arias make this opera well worth hearing too.' Read review

DVD/blu-ray

Mahler Symphony No 9 

Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra / Riccardo Chailly 

(Accentus)

'A moving, powerful Mahler Ninth from one of today’s leading conductor/ensemble relationships.' Read review

Reissue/archive

John Shirley-Quirk ‘English Song’ 

(Heritage) 

'Beautifully eloquent story-telling from the fondly remembered British bass-baritone.'

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