Rodrigo: Orchestral Works
The enormous success of the Concierto de Aranjuez has exacted a price, the bypassing of Rodrigo's concertos for other instruments, some of them no less worthy of attention. Two of the best are here extracted from their original couplings on LP and separated by Musica para un jardin, a pleasant if not remarkable slice of orchestral impressionism. None of the three works has any other version on CD. Rodrigo's style is one of the most easily recognizable—the piping, chattering woodwind pizzicato strings, spiky dissonances and broad tunes are ubiquitous elements, and within its limits he devises a good deal to charm the ear. Nancy Allen approaches the harp concerto in more 'ladylike' fashion than Zabaleta (DG—LP only) but retains its winsome qualities; there is, however, nothing reticent about Robert Cohen's delivery of the stronger cello work. If you like uncomplicated tunes and romantic picture-painting, and don't mind that Rodrigo so often comes close to self-quotation, you will enjoy these views of Aranjuez's surrounding countryside, and all the more since they are to be had through the 'windows' of an admirably clean recording.'