Bacewicz Complete String Quartets
This may be new music to you – it was to me – but these seven quartets offer a superb entrance into a sound world that journeys from the neo-classical to a modernist voice of great originality.
Shostakovich Symphonies Nos 5, 8 & 9
Boston Symphony Orchestra / Andris Nelsons
Symphony No 10 from the same forces was our Recording of the Month last August. A year on, and this further selection shows just the same power and passion.
Tchaikovsky Symphonies Nos 1, 2 & 5
Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra / Vasily Petrenko
An auspicious beginning to what could turn out to be an excellent cycle from Petrenko, one which really engages with the drama and detail of these symphonies.
These are poignant performances of music steeped in melancholy and given a deep beauty by Elizabeth Kenny and Phantasm, led by Laurence Dreyfus: a really wonderful Dowland recording.
Riley ‘Four Four Three’
Ragazze Quartet et al
A hugely enjoyable and distinctive response to the challenge – or freedoms – Terry Riley set for an undetermined number of musicians. An iconic work, excellently recorded by our current label of the year.
Simon Borutzki rec et al
Young recorder player Simon Borutzki is highly impressive in this performance of, among other pieces, Bach’s transcriptions for harpsichord of violin concertos, now arranged for recorder – just listen!
Beethoven Missa solemnis
Concentus Musicus Wien / Nikolaus Harnoncourt
This posthumous release is a moving and important final legacy left by Nikolaus Harnoncourt – a remarkable recording of the Missa solemnis from an extraordinary man.
Ešenvalds Passion According to St Luke
Latvian Radio Choir / Sigvards Kļava
Beginning in a moment of high drama – the crowd’s shouting ‘Crucify him’ – E≈envalds’s 2014 Passion setting offers listeners varied musical styles and superb performances.
MacMillan Since it was the Day of Preparation…
The second fascinating modern Gospel setting in this month’s selection – this time of the final sections from St John: a powerful work of personal faith by James MacMillan.
Wolf ‘Kennst du das Land?’
Sophie Karthäuser sop Eugene Asti pf
Beautiful singing from soprano Sophie Karthäuser, who seems perfectly at home in Lieder and specifically in this fine Wolf selection, with Eugene Asti an excellent partner.
Sols incl Petibon and Jaroussky; Freiburg Baroque Orchestra / Andrea Marcon
Katie Mitchell’s 2015 production from the Aix Festival, complete with fine music-making from Patricia Petibon, conductor Andrea Marcon and their colleagues.
Martha Argerich ‘Early Recordings’
Performances from the ’60s reveal – if needed – just what a visionary and compelling pianist Argerich has always been.