This Week's Essential New Classical Albums

Friday, May 28, 2021

Featuring new albums from Leif Ove Andsnes, Kate Lindsey, Mahan Esfahani, Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective and Tine Thing Helseth

Welcome to our guide to the best new classical releases this week. We’ve provided links to the albums on Apple Music, so you can dive straight in and enjoy the best new classical albums in great sound, and links to the Gramophone reviews where possible.

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Kate Lindsey discusses her new album, ‘Tiranno’, with James Jolly on this week's Gramophone Podcast (presented in association with Wigmore Hall), which you can enjoy below: 


This album is a follow-up to Mahan Esfahani's recording of JS Bach's Toccatas for Hyperion of 2019, an album which disappointed Gramophone's Patrick Rucker, who wrote: ‘Taken as a whole, in place of the imaginative freedom inherent in Bach’s Toccatas, Esfahani’s approach sounds unyielding, pressured and constrained.’ It’s worth noting, though, that Esfahani's earlier recording (2016) of the Goldberg Variations for DG was an Editor’s Choice and was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award. In his review, Jed Distler wrote: ‘his sophisticated virtuosity, stylistic aplomb and strong personal profile give fresh and meaningful voice to this well-travelled score.’ It will be fascinating to hear how Esfahani approaches the Six Partitas...

This album is our Recording of the Month in the June issue with Harriet Smith commenting: ‘The instances of chamber-musical finesse are everywhere, Leif Ove Andsnes always sounding like one of the gang.’ (Read the full review in the Reviews Database). You can read Hugo Shirley's in-depth interview with Andsnes about this album on the Gramophone website here: Leif Ove Andsnes on Mozart.

This is the Chandos debut of the Kaleidoscope Chamber Collective, the brainchild of Tom Poster and Elena Urioste, and they are joined here by bass Matthew Rose for Barber's Dover Beach alongside piano quintets by Florence Price and Amy Beach.

Tine Thing Helseth discussed her new album with Gramophone's Editor Martin Cullingford in last week's episode of the Gramophone Podcast, which can listen to here:

The Listening Room

Gramophone’s The Listening Room is an Apple Music playlist featuring hand-picked selection of the most interesting new classical releases chosen by Editor-in-Chief James Jolly. It’s the essential classical playlist:

Specialist Classical Chart

The Official Specialist Classical Chart Top 20 appears on the Gramophone website and is updated every Friday at 6pm (UK time). It’s a great way of exploring the new classical releases: 

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