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Georges Onslow

Symphonies Nos. 1 & 3

GEORGES ONSLOW (1763-1842): Symphony No. 1 in A, Op. 47, Symphony No. 3 in F Minor. When Onslow's first symphony was premiered in April of 1831, it was the first French work in that genre since Méhul's between 1808-10; before that, one had to go back to Gossec prior to the French Revolution (we don't count the Symphonie Fantastique since that was in a genre all by itself!). So, these symphonies (the third dates from 1834) are the starting point for the French Romantic symphonic tradition. Neither heroic in the Beethovenian mold nor consciously Classical like Haydn and Mozart, but rather a pleasing mix of the two styles, Onslow steers a middle path. Motivic development is important but rhythmic dynamism never obtrudes the way it does in Ries and Beethoven. First movements are the longest and most important, slow movements suitably lyrical and song-like, minuets vivacious with the finales the place where Onslow lets his hair down a bit. So, Onslow and Farrenc down. Dare we hope for the four symphonies of Henri Réber (1807-1880)? North German Radio Philharmonic; Johannes Goritzki. CPO 999 747 (Germany) 10G001 $15.98


Customers with back-ordered sale items are encouraged to ask about these CDs. Please be specific (the back-order files have a few holes in them due to human error); there are some discs waiting for you! Many back-ordered sale items, however, have yet to be filled.

Coleridge-Taylor Violin Concerto back-orders:

There are a lot of these because Avie's new distributor, a brand new operation, has been unable to supply us with any reorders since our original stock ran out. We have no idea how long this will be since the distributor has no track record to go by. Please be patient. Note: This also applies to the Peter Eötvös titles on BMC and the Franz Lachner lieder on Oehms Classics, both handled by the same distributor. This situation may have some effect on our ability to offer titles on these labels (and on Arabesque) since we don't want to offer titles of which we can't count on a steady supply.

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ERNÖ VON DOHNÁNYI (1877-1960): Violin Concerto No. 2 in C Minor, Op. 43, Piano Concerto No. 2 in B Minor, Op. 42, Concertino for Harp and Chamber Orchestra, Op. 45. The fourth Dohnányi disc from Bamert and Chandos brings three works written in Tallahassee, Florida between 1946 and 1952. All are conservative in the Brahmsian tradition with only the composer's characteristic harmonic twists attesting to their 20th century origin. The violin concerto could stand with its equally lush contemporary concertos by Barber and Korngold while the piano concerto, written for Dohnányi's own use, might be the last work of its genre in the grand Romantic tradition. The shorter harp Concertino seems to hark back to the composer's home, shot full of melancholy and Hungarian-tinged nostalgia. James Ehnes (violin), Clifford Lantaff (harp), Howard Shelley (piano), BBC Philharmonic; Matthias Bamert. Chandos 10245 (England) 10G002 $17.98

ERNÖ VON DOHNÁNYI (1877-1960): Piano Music, Vol. 2 - 5 Humoresken, Op. 17, Hedwigiana, Variations on a Hungarian Folk Song, Op. 29, 12 Short Studies for the Advanced Pianist. Four pieces from four distinct periods in the composer's life: Hedwigiana is a six-movement, seven-minute suite by a talented 14-year-old who knows his Schumann; the Humoresken (1907) infuse baroque and Renaissance forms with Romantic harmonies and virtuosity; the Variations (1917) begin Dohnányi's "Hungarian" period but are not to be confused with Bartók - these are Hungarian in the manner of Brahms. Finally, in 1951, the Short Studies, produced for pedagogical purposes, also give us an insight into the composer's own piano technique. Ilona Prunyi (piano). Hungaroton HCD 32191 (Hungary) 10G003 $17.98

FRANK BRIDGE (1879-1941): Orchestral Works, Vol. 5 - Suite for Strings, Valse Intermezzo à cordes, 2 Entr'actes, 2 Intermezzi from Threads, 2 Old English Songs, Todessehnsucht, Sir Roger de Coverley (A Christmas Dance), For Baritone and Orchestra: The Hag, 2 Songs of Robert Bridges. Getting to the end of the Bridge Edition means many shorter pieces and pieces which would have been considered "salon" in style. The Valse Intermezzo (1902), the intermezzi from a forgotten play Threads (1921/1938) and the two entr'actes, Rosemary and Canzonetta (1906/1926) fit into this category while The Hag (also 1902) is a rumbustious setting of a Herrick poem about a witch's ride and the other two orchestral songs (1905) also show a rarely heard side of the composer. Todessehnsucht is a 1932 arrangement of the Bach chorale Komm, süsser Tod and the Two English Songs (Sally in our Alley and Cherry Ripe) are as familiar to collectors as the Sir Roger de Coverley. The suite for strings thus remains as the finest "serious" work here, composed in 1909-10 and full of a French grace and technical sophistication while dealing with modal melodies of the type one associates with Vaughan Williams, Holst and Howells. Texts included. Roderick Williams (baritone), BBC National Orchestra of Wales; Richard Hickox. Chandos 10246 (England) 10G004 $17.98

DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975): Hypothetically Murdered, Op. 31a (orch. McBurney), 4 Romances on Poems by Pushkin for Bass and Chamber Orchestra, Op. 46 (compl. McBurney), 5 Fragments, Op. 42, Suite No. 1 for Jazz Band. Released 11 years ago on the Cala label (which never had wide distribution), this is the only complete recording of all 21 reconstructed numbers from Shostakovich's 1931 music-hall comedy (several of the cues were later used in other works). It also contains Gerald McBurney's orchestration of the fourth Pushkin Romance and a rare recording of the Fragments of 1935, Shostakovich's last experimental piece and which looks forward to the Symphony No. 4. English translations. Dmitri Kharitonov (bass), City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Mark Elder. Original 1993 Cala release. Signum Classics SIGCD051 (England) 10G005 $17.98

DMITRI SHOSTAKOVICH (1906-1975): Ballet Suites Nos. 1-4 (ed. Atovmyan). Comprising a total of 21 numbers, assembled from various stage, film and ballet scores (fully half of them - eleven - from The Limpid Stream) by the composer and prepared for publication by Levon Atovmyan between 1949-53, these entertaining suites ended up containing music in a "light" spirit which passed official muster in this form but which sometimes came from original sources which had been proscribed. Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Dmitri Yablonsky. Naxos 8.557208 (U.S.A.) 10G006 $6.98

ERVÍN SCHULHOFF (1884-1942): 5 Pieces for String Quartet, Concertino for Flute (Piccolo), Viola and Double Bass, Duo for Violin and Cello, String Sextet. All four works come from 1924-25, the height of Schulhoff's "avant-garde" period in which he blended jazz, popular music and expressionism to produce chromatic works with piquant, often bitter harmonies, grotesque humor (often expressed in derisive pastiches) and surprising dashes of pseudo-naivety. This is turning out to be the Schulhoff cycle to collect! Prazak Quartet, Kocian Quartet, Jirí Hudec (double bass), Václav Kunt (flute). Praga SACD Hybrid PRD/DSD 250 303 (Czech Republic) 10G007 $19.98

VIRGIL THOMSON (1896-1989): Suite from The Plow that Broke the Plains, Louisiana Story - Suite and Acadian Songs and Dances, Power Among Men - Fugues and Cantilenas. Probably the finest thing the record business has yet done for Thomson, this recording of suites from the WPA documentary The Plow (1936), the Flaherty semi-documentary Louisiana Story (1948 and winning Thomson the Pulitzer Prize) and the 1958 documentary Power Among Men is indispensible for lovers of film music, American music and musical history; brilliantly concise and informative notes from the late Christopher Palmer. Mid-price. The New London Orchestra; Ronald Corp. Original 1992 Hyperion release. Helios CDH 55169 (England) 10G008 $10.98

SERGEI PROKOFIEV (1891-1953): Egyptian Nights - Complete Incidental Music. Yes, there's more to the incidental music for this 1934 play (an odd-sounding conflation of Shakespeare, Pushkin and Shaw!) than last year's Chandos release offered. In fact, 55 minutes in all and die-hard Prokofiev collectors will want to have the extra spoken and sung sections since all are backed by music not otherwise heard. Spoken and sung in Russian but texts in German and English only. Khulpan Khamatova, Jakob Küf (speakers), Arutiun Kochinian (bass), RIAS Chamber Choir, RSO Berlin; Michael Jurowski. Capriccio 67 059 (Germany) 10G009 $16.98

IGOR MARKEVITCH (1912-1983): Psaume for Soprano and Orchestra, ALEXANDER ZEMLINSKY (1871-1942): Psalm 13 for Chorus and Orchestra, Op. 24, ERICH WOLFGANG KORNGOLD (1897-1957): Passover Psalm, Op. 30 for Soprano, Chorus and Orchestra, ERNEST BLOCH (1880-1959): Psalm 22 for Baritone and Orchestra. One of the more imaginative bits of programming brings us four psalm settings by (mostly) Jewish composers from the first half of the 20th century (deriving from a choral-orchestral series produced by the Munich Philharmonic called "Paradisi Gloria"). Markevitch's 1933 setting stands out not only for its length (at 21 minutes it's the longest here) but for its journey from doubt and introspection to a catalclysmically orgiastic conclusion of praise and enchantment. While Zemlinsky's 1935 setting has received several recordings, Korngold's has not (to our knowledge) appeared on CD. Written in 1941 for the chief rabbi of Los Angeles, this nine-minute work is as fruity, full-bodied and emotional as his film music, while Bloch's 1914 work, the most exotically "eastern"-sounding, is performed in its chamber orchestra reduction by Yoav Talmi. No texts. Elena Prokina (soprano), Berlin Radio Chorus, Emily Magee (soprano), Vincent Le Texier (baritone), Munich Radio Orchestra; Peter Rundel, Peter Ruzicka, Marcello Viotti. Profil PH04036 (Germany) 10G010 $16.98

ERNST KRENEK (1900-1991): Der Diktator, Op. 49, Das geheime Königreich, Op. 50, Schwergewicht oder Die Ehre der Nation, Op. 55. Written after Jonny spielt auf, for performance as a triolgy, these three one-act operas (described by their composer as "Tragic Opera", "Fairy-tale Opera" and "Burlesque Operetta" in the order listed above) revolve about the relationship between power and sex. A blinded soldier's wife goes to kill the dictator who sent him to war (the music ranges from grand opera to music-hall grotesque); a king, under pressure by revolutionaries whose leader inflames his queen, decides to abdicate (magical things happen in a forest - the music is a classical pastiche and recalls Mozart); a heavyweight boxer loses his wife to a lover but (barely) survives their attempt to murder him (a pasodoble, a waltz, a tango milonga). For all collectors and students of the creative ferment of Weimar Germany. 2 CDs. German-English libretti. Urban Malmberg, Michael Kraus (baritones), Celina Lindsley, Claudia Barainsky (sopranos), Robert Wörle (tenor), Roland Bracht (bass), RIAS Chamber Choir, Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin; Marek Janowski. Capriccio 60 107 (Germany) 10G011 $29.98

LUIGI DALLAPICCOLA (1904-1975): Tartiniana seconda for Violin and Piano, 2 studi for Violin and Piano, Ciaccona, Intermezzo e Adagio for Cello, Quaderno musicale di Annalibera for Piano. Dallapiccola's contrapuntal mastery - and so much more besides - is especially easy to marvel at in this selection of chamber works. Tartiniana seconda brilliantly evokes Tartini and is a lively and delightful popular showpiece. The dodecaphonic works - all the rest, to a greater or lesser extent - show just how rich, versatile and unrestricting the technique can be, in the hands of a truly great composer thoroughly versed in the nuances of Baroque compositional forms which form the basis of many sections of these works. Sonorous and expressive, harmonically rich yet constantly shifting and ambiguous, these works demonstrate throughout the pervasive influence of Busoni while maintaining Dallapiccola's unmistakable intense individuality in every measure. Rodolfo Bonucci (violin), Arturo Bonucci (cello), Bruno Canino (piano). Stradivarius STR 33332 (Italy) 10G012 $17.98

GOTTFRIED VON EINEM (1918-1996): Serenade for Double String Orchestra, Op. 10, Concertino carintico for 12 Strings, Op. 86, Steinbeis Serenade - Variations for 8 Instruments on a theme from Mozart's "Don Giovanni" for Oboe, Clarinet, Bassoon, Horn, Trumpet, Piano, Violin and Cello, Op. 61, 8 Kammergesänge for Mezzo-Soprano and Small Orchestra, Op. 32. One of the least well-represented composers in the digital era, von Einem was castigated by critics throughout the 20th century for his unfashionable conservatism. Now that this is a mark of distinction, we can enjoy his gift for lovely melody, infectious zest and rhythmic diversity, all of which are evident in this 1991 (but previously unreleased) recording works for string orchestra and small ensemble. German-English texts. Ulrike Pichler-Steffen (mezzo), Wiener Concert-Verein; Ernst Kovacic, Claudio Büchler, Andreas Stöhr, Christian Simonis. VMS 135 (Austria) 10G013 $17.98 >

GRAZYNA BACEWICZ (1909-1969): Violin Sonatas Nos. 4 & 5, Oberek No. 1 for Violin and Piano, Partita for Violin and Piano, Capriccio for Violin and Piano, Sonata No. 2 for Violin Solo, Polish Capriccio for Solo Violin. Richly communicative and full of emotion, these pieces, both solo and with piano accompaniment, are also often drivingly motoric and produce a cumulative effect which is quite exciting. The composer was a brilliant violinist (finishing after Neveu and Oistrakh in the 1935 Wieniawski Competition) and she writes for her own instrument with all the passion that implies. Her compositional training included both Szymanowski and Boulanger, so there is a sense of romantic fervor contained within neo-classical forms. Joanna Kurkowicz (violin), Glorian Chien (piano). Chandos 10250 (England) 10G014 $17.98

TOBIAS HUME (?1569-1645): from Musicall Humors: A humorous Pavin, Captaine Humes Galliard, My hope is decayed, Captaine Humes Pavin, Harke, harke, A Souldiers Galliard, The Spirit of Gambo, A Pavin, Touch me lightly, Beccus an Hungarian Lord, The Second part, Loves farewell, The Duke of Holstones Almaine, Death, Life, A Question, An Answere, The new Cut, A Souldiers Resolution, Good againe. A selection from the second-earliest collection of music for the bass viol (after the 1553 Glaosas of Diego Ortiz), published by the Scottish mercenary and musician in 1604, whose wealth of creative richness and expressivity pointed the way for later masters of this instrument. Jordi Savall (viola da gamba). Alia Vox AV 9837 (Spain) 10G015 $17.98

ISABELLA LEONARDA (1620-1704): 12 Trio Sonatas, Op. 16. Published in 1693, this set of sonata da chiesa (an organ is used for continuo) by an Italian nun who was certainly one of the most prolific of woman composers of the period is in early baroque style. The sonatas are in sections ranging from four to twelve but are true trio sonatas (two violins and cello) since the cello often participates as an independent voice. Cappella Strumentale del Duomo di Novara. Tactus TC 623701 (Italy) 10G016 $11.98

DIETRICH BUXTEHUDE (1637-1707): Sacred Cantatas: Was frag' ich nach der Welt, Jesu, meine Freud und Lust, Sicut Moses, Wenn ich, Herr Jesu, habe dich, In te, Domine, speravi, Jublilate Domino, Wie schmeckt es so lieblich und wohl, Passacaglia, Bux WV 107 (arr. for strings by K. Mallon). Three cantatas for four voices, which use voices and instrumental ritornellos to maximum contrast in a robust style, and four cantatas for single voice, which demonstrate the composer's more intimate style. Texts and translations included. Matthew White (countertenor), Katherine Hill (soprano), Paul Grindlay (bass), Aradia Ensemble; Kevin Mallon. Naxos 8.557041 (New Zealand) 10G017 $6.98

DIETRICH BUXTEHUDE (1637-1707): Kommst du, Licht der Heiden, Magnificat, Wie soll ich dich empfangen, Ihr lieben Christen freut euch nun, Cantate Domino, Das neugeborne Kindelein, In dulci jubilo, Alleluja. More sacred cantatas, for Advent and Christmas, with the same rich variety of approach and form mentioned above. German-English texts. Vocalensemble Rastatt, Les Favorites; Holger Speck. Carus 83.156 (Germany) 10G018 $17.98

FRANCESCO MANCINI (1673-1737): Recorder Sonatas No. 2 in E Minor & No. 13 in G Minor, DOMENICO SARRI (1679-1744): Recorder Sonata No. 11 in A Minor, FRANCESCO BARBELLA (1692-1733): Recorder Sonata No. 3 in C, ALESSANDRO SCARLATTI (1660-1725): Recorder Sonata No. 9 in A Minor, DOMENICO GALLO (c.1730-?): Trio Sonata No. 1 inn G, JOHN RAVENSCROFT (?-c.1705): Sonata Ottava, ARCANGELO CORELLI (1653-1713): Fuga con un soggetto solo in D. This English group's latest collection focuses on Naples and the wide variety of styles which could be found, even the fugal movements common to all of the recorder sonatas being approached in four different ways. Dan Laurin (recorder), London Baroque. BIS CD-1395 (Sweden) 10G019 $17.98

JOAN CEREROLS (1618-1680): Salve regina, Ave regina caelorum, Alma redemptoris mater, Regina caeli, Ave maris stella, ANSELM VIOLA (1738-1798): Laetatus sum, Kyrie eleison, NARCIS CASANOVAS (1747-1799): Salve Regina, IRENEU SEGARRA (b.1917): Salve Regina. A collection of sacred music, mostly Marian, from composers associated with the Monastery and choir school of Montserrat, with conductor/composer Segarra representing one of the latest generations, in recordings made in 1989-91 but not previously issued. Escolania i Capilla de Monterrat, Chorus and Orchestra d'Antics Escolans, Ars Musicae Barcelona; Ireneu Segarra. VMS 139 (Austria) 10G020 $17.98 >

ANTONIO CALDARA (1670-1736): La clemenza di Tito. Produced in 1734, this was the first staging of Metastasio's famous play and Caldara produced music of striking psychological acuity, the orchestra of strings only, the better to adumbrate the suffering, reflection and twists and turns of the characters' and their motivations. One can hardly think this cheered up the Emperor (it was written for his name-day) after he had lost Naples and Sicily earlier in the year, but it is a strikingly dramatic work which looks forward to the Classical period. 2 CDs. Italian-English libretto. Mya Fracassini (contralto), Ornella Pratesi, Eleonora Contucci (sopranos), Chorus of the Camerata Polifonica of Viterbo, Orchestra della Stagione Armonica; Sergio Balestracci. Bongiovanni GB 2360/61 (Italy) 10G021 $33.98

ANTONIO VIVALDI (1678-1741): Violin Concertos in C, RV 189, in E "L'amoroso", RV 271, in C Minor, RV 202, in C, RV 183, in E Minor "Il favorito", RV 277 & in F, RV 286. About 30 years ago it was discovered that a manuscript of violin concertos called La Cetra, in the possession of Charles VI, Holy Roman Emperor from the time Vivaldi gave it to him in 1728, was (with the exception of one piece) not identical to the set of 12 concertos with the same name and printed as Op. 9. Andrew Manze performs for the first time a reconstruction of the six concertos using available material from alternate sources. The results crackle with electricity when not sighing with pastoral ennui and are a must-have for anyone interested in Vivaldi or the art of playing the baroque violin. The English Concert; Andrew Manze (violin). Harmonia Mundi HMU 907332 (U.S.A.) 10G022 $17.98

GEORG PHILIPP TELEMANN (1681-1767): Cantatas from Fortsetzung des Harmonischen Gottesdienstes - No. 42 Die Glut des Zorns, No. 67 Mein Glaube ringt in letzten Zügen, No. 48 Da, Jesu, Deinen Ruhm zu mehren, No. 5 Ein Jammerton, ein schuchzend Ach, No. 35 Ertrage nur das Joch der Mängel, Fugues for Organ, TWV 30:6, 8, 13 & 20. This second set of 72 cantatas for all Sundays and feast days in the Lutheran calendar was published in 1731-2 and also features solo voice with two or three instruments accompanying. The works are in two parts, fast and slow, divided by a short recitative and this selection was chosen to represent the greatest contrasts possible in such a large corpus. German-English texts. Ruth Ziesak (soprano), Camerata Köln. CPO 999 764 (Germany) 10G023 $15.98

GIUSEPPE TARTINI (1692-1770): Violin Concertos, Vol. 12 - in C, D9, in D, D24, in A, D97, in F, D64, in A, D106, in E, D49, in B Flat, D122, in G, D79 and in C, D5. By this point in time, you don't need us to tell you whether you want the dozenth volume of these wonderfully virtuosic and, in their slow movements, movingly lyrical concertos. This series is a real landmark for collectors of baroque concertos and these nine works, all from Tartini's second creative period (1735-49), all have moments of sublimity and are valuable additions to the canon. 2 CDs. L'arte dell'Arco; Giovanni Guglielmo (violin). Dynamic CDS 462/1-2 (Italy) 10G024 $35.98

JOHANN HELMICH ROMAN (1694-1758): Flute Sonatas in D and in E Minor, JOHAN AGRELL (1701-1765): Harpsichord Sonata No. 6 in G Minor, MARTIN RÆHS (1702-1766): Allegro with variations, FRANCESCO RUFFO (?-?): Suite in F, From Jacob Mestmacher's Manuscript: Suite, Murky for Harpsichord, Angloisi, HERR B.xxx (?-?): Variations on "Gestern Abend" for Flute and Continuo. A collection of Nordic baroque music from handwritten manuscripts as well as published sources highlights the musical scene in Sweden and Denmark in the early 18th century. Nordic Baroque Quartet. Simax PSC 1224 (Norway) 10G025 $18.98

CARL PHILIPP EMANUEL BACH (1714-1788): Piano Solos: Trost der Erlösung, Morgengesang, Geduld, Der 88. Psalm, Abendlied. Lieder: Am Neuen Jahr, Bußlied, Der Weg des Frommen, Trost eines schwermütigen Christen, Der Schutz der Kirche, Das Glück eines guten Gewissens, Vom Worte Göttes, Die Liebe des Nächsten, Die Liebe der Feinde, Die Ehre Gottes aus der Natur, Abendlied, Prüfung am Abend, Weihnachtslied, Passionslied, Osterlied, Lied am Geburtstage, Preis des Schöpfers, Bitten, Der 100. Psalm, Das Gebet, Morgengesang, Wider den Übermut, In Krankheit, Vom Tode, Das natürliche Verderben des Menschen. This selection from 55 settings of odes by the severe Christian Fürchtegott Geller was published in 1757. The texts, often simple and straightforward in their pious way and yet also now and then disarmingly beautiful, drew a pure response from the composer, with little of the Sturm und Drang and angst which one might expect from this period. Such as does come is entirely in the service of the poetry and this set is an interesting contribution to the dawn of the German Lied. 2 CDs. German-English texts. Dorothee Mields (soprano), Ludger Rémy (fortepiano). CPO 777 061 (Germany) 10G026 $31.98

JOHANN ERNST HARTMANN (1726-1793): Symphonies No. 1 in D, No. 2 in G, No. 3 in D & No. 4 in G. This is the grandfather of J.P.E. Hartmann whose move to Denmark in 1762 from Holstein in Germany ultimately created a fine Danish family of composers. Hartmann probably wrote dozens of symphonies but the vast majority of his compositions perished in a 1794 fire at Christiansborg Palace and the four recorded here are all that is left. Probably all dating from around 1770, they are not unlike middle-period Haydn with the first two using pairs of oboes and horns and the last two only a bassoon with the usual strings. Concerto Copenhagen; Lars Ulrik Mortensen. CPO 777 060 (Germany) 10G027 $15.98

BALDASSARE GALUPPI (1706-1785): Complete Piano Sonata, Vol. 3 - Sonatas in F, A Flat, E, C, D, G, B Flat & E Flat. No, the first two volumes have not been offered yet by Divine Art's new American distributor; when they are, we will offer them. Sievewright, a professor of 18th century counterpoint and 19th century musical techniques at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama, provides detailed, well-written notes (each volume's notes focus on a particular aspect of Galuppi's art, so starting in Volume 3 is a little unsettling) in which he makes clear that he sees this Venetian as the first important composer for the new fortepiano and supports it with sharp, easily apprehended examples. However, conservative collectors will surely salute his preference for recording this music on a modern Steinway. Peter Sievewright (piano). The Divine Art 25015 (England) 10G028 $16.98

BALDASSARE GALUPPI (1706-1785): L'oracolo del Vaticano. Written at short notice in October 1758 for the elevation of a cardinal, this is a typical work for the occasion - Merit, Justice and Humility debate the would-be cardinal's characteristics and unanimously approve his appointment. Galuppi used a couple of opera arias in the second section, providing a little stage flair. Italian-English texts. Mónika onzález, Edit Károly (sopranos), Tamás Kóbor (tenor), Savaria Baroque Orchestra; Fabio Pirona. Hungaroton HCD 32252 (Hungary) 10G029 $17.98

DOMENICO CIMAROSA (1749-1801): Gli Orazi e i Curiazi. Produced in 1796, this score is full of revolutionary fervor, Republicanism and the exaltation of duty and honor. Pomp, spectacle and massed battle scenes are the norm, the tender love duets between the leads welcome pre-Romantic interludes amongst the brazen tumult. Rec. April 13, 1952. 2 CDs. No libretto. Angela Vercelli (contralto), Giulietta Simionato (soprano), Tommaso Spataro (tenor), RAI Milan Symphony Chorus and Orchestra; Carlo Maria Giulini. Urania URN 22.264 (Italy) 10G030 $31.98

WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART (1756-1791): La finta semplice, K 51. Derived from commedia dell'arte with a libretto by Goldoni, this work of the 12-year-old Mozart cannot compare with his mature operas but can compare reasonably well with much of the material of his successful Italian contemporaries. Brilliant has the other nine pre-Idomeneo operas too - we'll be offering them when they are made available. 3 CDs. Budget-price. Italian libretto. Helen Donath (soprano), Robert Holl (bass), Anthony Rolfe-Johnson (tenor), Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg; Leopold Hager. Original 1983 Orfeo release. Brilliant Classics 92345 (Netherlands) 10G031 $16.98

PAVEL VRANICKY (1756-1808): Sextets for Flute, Oboe, Violin, 2 Violas and Cello No. 3 in E Flat, No. 4 in C Minor & No. 6 in D Minor, ANTONÍN VRANICKY (1761-1820): Sextet No. 7 in G for Flute, Oboe, Violin, 2 Violas and Cello. All of these sextets date from around 1790 and are in the style of Haydn. Symphony collectors may be interested in knowing that the three by Pavel are transcriptions of symphonies; Antonín's (longer) work is apparently original in this form. Mid-price. Jana Brozková (oboe), Jirí Válek (flute), Stamic Quartet. Original 1998 Supraphon release. Supraphon SU 3788 (Czech Republic) 10G032 $10.98

LUDWIG AUGUST LEBRUN (1752-1790): Oboe Concertos, Vol. 2 - No. 3 in C, No. 5 in C, No. 6 in F, LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827): Largo from Oboe Concerto in F, Hess 12. Lebrun was the oboist of the Mannheim orchestra from the age of 18 and was widely acknowledged as the greatest master of his instrument. His concertos make full use not only of all the qualities and capabilities of the oboe but also employ the many compositional traits associated with the "Mannheim style" which make for unusual, exciting and often unexpected listening. Bart Schneemann (oboe), Radio Chamber Orchestra; Jan Willem de Vriend. SACD Hybrid. Channel Classics CCS SA 21404 (Netherlands) 10G033 $21.98

PETER VON WINTER (1754-1825): Symphony No. 2 in F, Symphony No. 3 in B, Clarinet Concerto in E Flat, Aria for Soprano, Clarinet and Orchestra. Winter's symphonies are three-movement works from 1780 in the Mannheim style with rather forward-looking slow movements which play with various kinds of orchestral sonority. The concerto may be from 1780, making it an important link between Stamitz's and Mozart's concertos for the instrument while the dramatic aria (1788) is of operatic quality. No texts. Dieter Klöcker (clarinet), Isolde Siebert (soprano), Southwest German Chamber Orchestra Pforzheim; Johannes Moesus. Orfeo C 192 041 A (Germany) 10G034 $18.98

FRANZ WILHELM TAUSCH (1762-1817): 2 Concerti in B Flat for 2 Clarinets and Orchestra, Opp. 26 & 27, FRANZ XAVER SÜSSMAYR (1766-1803): Concerto Movement in D for Basset Clarinet (compl. M. Freyhan). Amazingly, Tausch was in the same Mannheim orchestra as Lebrun, above - at the age of 8! The founder of the German school of clarinet playing, he valued beautiful tone over virtuosity, as do his two double concertos, and numbered Heinrich Baermann and the Swedish composer Crusell among his students. The first movement of Süssmayr's concerto was completed for this recording. Mid-price. Thea King (clarinet, basset clarinet), Nicholas Bucknall (second clarinet), English Chamber Orchestra; Leopold Hager. Original 1991 Hyperion release. Helios CDH 55188 (England) 10G035 $10.98

JEAN-LOUIS DUPORT (1749-1819)&NICOLAS BOCHSA (1789-1856): Nocturne in B Flat, Nocturne No. 1 in E Flat, Melange, Nocturne No. 3 in G Minor. A rare example of co-composition, each contributor dealing with his own instrument's part. The pair were highly successful in the Paris of the mid 1810s, their music's surface brilliance and virtuosity appealing to the general taste of the salon and nobility. Donald Moline (cello), Rachel Ferris (harp). Centaur CRC 2688 (U.S.A.) 10G036 $16.98

NICOLÒ PAGANINI (1782-1840): Centone di sonate, Vols. 1-3, Cantabile in D, Sonatas, Opp. 1, 2, 4, 5, 6, 12 Sonate di Lucca, Opp. 3 & 8, Duetto amoroso, 6 Sonatas, Op. 2 (Op. 9), 6 Sonatas, Op. 3 (Op. 10), Sonata concertante, Allegro vivace a movimento perpetuo, Entrata d'Adone nella reggia di Venere, Cantabile e Valtz, Variazioni sul Barucabà, 6 Duetti, Carmagnola con variazioni, Grande Sonata concertata. 9 CDs for the price of 3. Luigi Alberto Bianchi (violin), Maurizio Preda (guitar). Dynamic CDS 466/1-9 (Italy) 10G037 $53.98

CARL LUDWIG LITHANDER (1773-1843): Sonatas in C and in F Sharp Minor, Allegrezza in C, Capriccio in G, FREDRIK LITHANDER (1777-1823): Rondo "La Jouissance" in D, Variations on a Theme by Haydn in A, CHRYSTHOPHYLUS LITHANDER (1778-1823): Polonaise in C, DAVID LITHANDER (1780-1807): Waltz in B Flat. The majority of the 77 minutes here is occupied by the music of Carl Ludwig, which will appeal greatly to collectors of the London Fortepiano School (the C major sonata dates from 1814 and a period of stay in London) and to those of early Romanticism in general (the F sharp minor sonata, published in 1817, has some Beethovenian characteristics about it) while the shorter works by members of this rather unknown Finnish family fill out an interesting disc played on a Graf fortepiano of around 1830 and on a copy of a Walter from the 1780s. Tuija Hakkila (fortepianos). Alba ABCD 179 (Finland) 10G038 $16.98

CARL MARIA VON WEBER (1786-1826): Die drei Pintos (compl. Mahler). You might call this "Mahler's only opera" given that the scoring and conception are entirely Mahlerian. The latter reconstructed a performing edition of Weber's unfinished opera in 1888, orchestrating the remaining fragments (only about a third of the work) and rescoring unfamiliar and unpublished music by the composer. Another fine example of the adventurous programming of the Wexford Festival where this recording was made late last October. 2 CDs. No libretto, English synopsis. Barbara Zechmeister (soprano), Sophie Marilley (mezzo), Eric Shaw, Peter Furlong (tenors), Wexford Festival Opera Chorus, National Philharmonic Orchestra of Belarus; Paolo Arrivabeni. Naxos 8.660142-43 (New Zealand) 10G039 $15.98

GAETANO DONIZETTI (1797-1848): Overture to L'ajo nell'imbarazzo, Excerpts from Alfredo il grande, Pietro il grande, Kzar delle Russie, Enrico di Borgogna, Zoraida di Granata, Chiara e Serafina, Le nozze in villa, Gabriella di Vergy, Elvida, La zingara and L'eremitaggio di Liwerpool. The works excerpted here from various existing Opera Rara complete opera recordings date from 1818-28 and show us that Donizetti's genius predated Anna Bolena as he experiments with various modes of expression and includes a duet from a not yet issued complete recording of Elvida. No texts but detailed notes and synopses. Various soloists (21 of them!), Philharmonia Orchestra, Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, London Philharmonic Orchestra; David Parry, Antonello Allemandi, Alun Francis. Opera Rara ORR 229 (England) 10G040 $19.98

GIOACHINO ROSSINI (1792-1868): Zelmira. Rossini's last opera in Naples (1822), this showcase featured two extravagantly difficult roles for tenors and this live recording from the 2003 Edinburgh International Festival has a very distinguished cast which performs the (as the notes inform us) "first absolutely complete recording of the opera". 3 CDs. Italian-English libretto and the usual lavish, 12-color 3000-page booklet. Bruce Ford, Antonino Siragusa (tenors), Elizabeth Futral (soprano), Manuela Custer (mezzo), Scottish Chamber Orchestra and Chorus; Maurizio Benini. Opera Rara ORC 27 (England) 10G041 $59.98

IGNAZ MOSCHELES (1794-1870): Variations on "Alexander's March" for Piano and Orchestra, Variations on "Au Clair de la Lune" for Piano and Orchestra, Piano Concerto No. 1 in F, Op. 45, Piano Concerto No. 6 in B Flat "Concert Fantastique", Op. 90. Although the two concertos here have already appeared in Hyperion's "Romantic Piano Concerto" series, the remaining two works last 32 minutes are fine examples of Moscheles' youthful brilliance in the theme-and-variations genre which made his reputation as a traveling virtuoso/composer. Alexander's March (1815) employs a tune used by the Czar's Regiment and its 1821 discmate a popular French song of the period, the former prefiguring such later works as Chopin's La ci darem la mano variations. Sinfonia da Camera; Ian Hobson (piano). Zephyr Z127-04 (U.S.A.) 10G042 $16.98

CARLO YVON (1798-1854): Sonata in F Minor for English horn and Piano, Canto notturno for Oboe and Piano, 6 studi for Oboe and Piano, 2 Duetti for 2 Oboes, Capriccio for 3 Oboes. Yvon's music has two main qualities - a singing line influenced by the bel canto of his day (on evidence particularly in the only Romantic english horn sonata you're likely to come across) and extreme virtuosity which is present in the Studi (actual concert etudes for stage performance) and the duets and trio. Alessandro Baccini (oboe, eng. horn), Alessandro Cappella (piano), Francesco Di Rosa, Chiara Staibano (oboes). Tactus TC 792401 (Italy) 10G043 $11.98

JOACHIM RAFF (1822-1882): Blätter und Lieder, Leb' wohl, Keine sorg' um den Weg, Das verlassene Mädchen, Müllerlied Nos. 1 and 2, Mädchenlied, Der Ungetreuen, Das Schloss am Meer, Die Nonne, Vor dem Gang zum Schaffot, Nach der Geburt ihres Sonnes, Gebet, Abschied von der Welt, Geständniß der Liebe, Ave Maria, Rastlose Liebe, Lorelei, Die Hochzeitsnacht. It won't come as a surprise that melody is not a problem for Raff in his lieder. However, the inventiveness of his approach to strophic poetry, his constant desire to vary that approach, also in his writing for the keyboard, help constantly keep the listener's interest in this typically lovelorn or pastoral poetry. (Most of these songs come from his op.98 but no opus numbers are given for each item.) German-English texts. Andrea Meláth (mezzo), Emese Virág (piano). Hungaroton (Special Import) HCD 32256 (Hungary) 10G044 $17.98 >

LOUIS MOREAU GOTTSCHALK (1829-1869): Piano Music, Vol. 7 - The Water Sprite, Op. 27, Forget Me Not, Deuxième Banjo, Op. 30, Ardennes Mazurka, Le cri de délivrance, Op. 55, Fairy Land, Hurrah Galop, Le chant du soldat, Op. 23, Amour chevaleresque, La brise, Madeleine, Ballade No. 7, Op. 87, La Gallina, Op. 53, The Dying Swan, Op. 100, God Save the Queen, Op. 41. Slowly, but surely, they keep coming out, this one with the usual mixture of genteel salon mazurkas and polkas seasoned with a virtuosic show-stopper or two (Le cri, a caprice on "The Battle Cry of Freedom" and Le chant du soldat), with the usual trenchant notes and composition/publication information. Philip Martin (piano). Hyperion CDA 67478 (England) 10G045 $17.98

FRIEDRICH KIEL (1821-1885): String Quartet in A Minor, Op. 53/1, 3 Waltzes for String Quartet, Op. 73. As we mentioned when offering the volumes of piano music on the Verlag Dohr label, Kiel's uvre is mostly for the keyboard, making this new release particularly interesting. A lack of scholarship on the composer forces us to estimate the time of composition (around 1874) but we know that the work is not intended for amateurs, its technical requirements demanding the type of quartet which premiered it, the famous Joachim Quartet. Bamberg String Quartet. Cavalli Records CCD 231 (Germany) 10G046 $17.98

MILOSLAW KOENNEMANN (1826-1890): Der Fremersberg, JACQUES OFFENBACH (1819-1880): Overture to La Princesse de Trébizonde, KONRADIN KREUTZER (1780-1849): Overture to Das Nachtlager von Granada, JEAN-BAPTISTE ARBAN (1825-1889): Fantasie and Variations on "Carnival in Venice" for Trumpet and Orchestra, CHARLES GOUNOD (1818-1893): Entr'acte from La colombe, JOHANN STRAUSS II (1825-1899): Ballsträußchen, Op. 380, Lob der Frauen, Op. 315. The spa town of Baden-Baden is the pivot around which this collection rotates, every work here either composed for or performed in Baden-Baden (except for the Strauss pieces which seem to be here for no particular reason). Collectors will be after the 19-minute tone-poem by the town's band-master, named after a near-by mountain and telling the story of the Margrave's hunt, a pastoral scene, a thunderstorm and the Margrave's thankfulness for finding a monastery for shelter (wonderfully tacky orchestral effects!). Baden-Baden Philharmonic; Werner Stiefel. Sterling CDS-1062 (Sweden) 10G047 $16.98

KARL GOLDMARK (1830-1915): Piano Trios in B Flat, Op. 6 and in E Minor, Op. 33. One early and one late trio from the Hungarian-born composer, both with echoes of Schumann and Mendelssohn as well as frequent fugato writing which was also dear to Goldmark since his early studies of Bach. Mendelssohn Piano Trio. Centaur CRC 2684 (U.S.A.) 10G048 $16.98

JOHANNES BRAHMS (1833-1897): 4 Gesänge for Women's Choir, 2 Horns and Harp, Op. 17, For Chorus: 6 Lieder und Romanzen, Op. 93a, Im Herbst, Op. 104/5, Marienlieder, Op. 22, Ach, arme Welt, du trügest mich, Op. 110/2, 2 Motetten, Op. 74. These rarely recorded works show Brahms' life-long interest in early music and folk song with op. 17 standing out for its inclusion of the ultra-romantic instrument, the horn. German texts. Chamber Choir of Europe; Nicol Matt, Martina Schrott (harp), Sebastian Schindler, Sebastian Schorr (horns). Brilliant Classics SACD Hybrid 92206 (Netherlands) 10G049 $13.98

EDVARD GRIEG (1843-1907): Peer Gynt - Complete Incidental Music. The most recent competition for this music was the Järvi on DG which has been deleted for around a decade. Those who didn't own it and never knew how much music (and narration) there was in Grieg's incidental music (just over 135 minutes here) can enjoy it in this new recording which contains complete German-English texts. 2 CDs. Anneli Pfeffer (soprano), Cologne Radio Symphony Orchestra; Helmuth Froschauer. Capriccio 60 110 (Germany) 10G050 $29.98

JENÖ HUBAY (1858-1937): Works for Violin and Piano, Vol. 7 - Transcriptions: David Popper: Tarantelle, Géza Zichy [1948-1924]: Liebestraum, Andor Merkler [1862-1922]: Valse intermède, Jules Massenet: Prélude to Hérodiade, Franz Liszt: Valse oubliée No. 1, Edvard Grieg: Solveig's Song, Johannes Brahms: Sapphisches Ode, Anton Rubinstein: Barcarolle No. 1, Sergei Rachmaninov: Polichinelle, Richard Strauss: Traum durch die Dämmerung, Henri Vieuxtemps: Rêve, George Frederic Handel: Larghetto, Giuseppe Tartini: Sonata The Devil's Trill, Johann Sebastian Bach: Air. A great example of the various ways in which transcription can be effected, sometimes doing next to nothing beyond adding fingering, editing a piece in the modern style (Tartini), separating voice and accompaniment... The wide range of chronology and style is remarkable. Ferenc Szecsödi (violin), István Kassai (piano). Hungaroton HCD 32193 (Hungary) 10G051 $17.98

Paderewski's only opera

IGNAZ JAN PADEREWSKI (1860-1941): Manru. Paderewski's only opera (and last major composition) received its premiere in 1901. Wagnerian elements present are the continuous action and use of leitmotifs, an orchestral scored with symphonic flair and treatment of the voice often as a musical instrument. Some Polish folk elements are introduced (the plot involves a village girl who marries a gypsy, earning her mother's enmity, which offers the opportunity for a rustic harvest festival and a few scenes of rural, village activity) but Paderewski isn't after a national Polish opera in the manner of Smetana and there is as much Italian style here as there is Wagnerian. 2 CDs. Polish libretto, English synopsis. Taras Ivaniv (tenor), Ewa Czermak (soprano), Barbara Krahel (mezzo), Maciej Krzysztyniak (baritone), Chorus and Orchestra of the Lower Silesian Opera, Wroclaw; Ewa Michnik. Dux 0368/0369 (Poland) 10G052 $33.98

MARCO ENRICO BOSSI (1861-1925): 5 Pieces, Op. 104, 3 Pieces, Op. 92, 5 Pieces, Op. 132. This 2001 release (never distributed in the U.S.) offers a useful addition to the under-recorded organ uvre of this important Italian organist/composer. The five pieces of op. 104 trace the events of a Catholic mass and include a lovely, rapt Ave Maria while the remaining two sets are romantic program music. Op. 92 consists of Chant du soir, Idylle and an Allegretto of similar character while the long (39 minutes) op. 132 is pure late Romanticism (Legende, Trauerzug, Ländliche Szene, Stunde der Weihe and Stunde der Freude) of a central European cast. Erzsébet Áchim (organ of the Cistercian Abbey, Zirc, Hungary). Hungaroton (Special Import) HCD 32016 (Hungary) 10G053 $17.98 >

JEAN SIBELIUS (1865-1957): Complete Sibelius, Vol. 54 - Overture in A Minor, Snöfrid, Op. 29 for Narrator, Chorus and Orchestra, Cantata for the Coronation of Nicholas II for Chorus and Orchestra, Oma Maa, Op. 92 for Chorus and Orchestra, Andante festivo, Rakastava, Op. 14. It's now rather on the other side of impossible to tell what rare works by Sibelius have been recorded before so, given that no world premiere recordings are claimed on the CD, we'll assume none of them are. Snöfrid (1900), unlike Stenhammar's setting of the same poem, breathes a true Sibelian air with the ocean always present in the background in its tale of a youth enticed by a sea-sprite and the 1902 overture, written for the same concert in which the Symphony No. 2 was premiered, is immediately recognizable. The cantata (1896) has its moments but a patriotic Finn will have a hard time writing such an item as this, and Oma Maa (1918), a celebration of Finnish independence, is oddly peaceful and lyrical, seeming to be looking at a distant future rather than rejoicing in the end of the Civil War. Swedish, Finnish-English texts. Stina Ekblad (narrator), Jubilate Choir, Lahti Symphony Orchestra; Osmo Vänskä. BIS CD-1265 (Sweden) 10G054 $17.98

ALBERT ROUSSEL (1869-1937): Psalm 80 for Tenor, Chorus and Orchestra, Fanfare pour un sacre paiën, Le Bardit des Francs for Male Chorus, Brass and Percussion, Aeneas for Chorus and Orchestra. The two big works here are 1928's psalm-setting (in English), a 20-minute exercise in high-powered, emotional drama in which the people begging their God for deliverance leave no doubt as to their suffering, their desperation and their need for deliverance. Pounding rhythms, bitonalty and sumptuous counterpoint make for a riveting experience. The 1937 ballet Aeneas (38 minutes in length) moves from austerity to a grandiose final hymn along a path of implacable power with the chorus inserting itself now and then to comment on the action; a must-have for any Roussel collector. And for sheer blood-thirsty (and -curdling) excitement, the five-minute "War Song of the Franks" will certainly convince you to stay out of their neighborhood! French-English texts. Benjamin Butterfield (tenor), EuropaChorAkademie, Luxembourg Philharmonic Orchestra; Bramwell Tovey. Timpani 1C1082 (France) 10G055 $18.98

GABRIEL PIERNÉ (1863-1937): Flute Sonata in D Minor, Op. 36, JOSEPH-GUY ROPARTZ (1864-1955): Sonatine in G for Flute and Piano, GABRIEL FAURÉ (1845-1924): Flute Sonata in A, Op. 13, CAMILLE SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921): Romance for Flute and Piano, Op. 37. A disc of quintessentially French music for what may be called a quintessentially French instrument, at least in the Romantic period. Two lesser-heard items are included - Ropartz' 15-minute Sonatine from 1930 and Pierné's own transcription (1910) of a 1900 violin sonata - both of them showing the combination of melodic charm, expressive intensity and cyclic form which reveal that Massenet and Franck had been teachers of both men. The Fauré (actually his first violin sonata) is performed in an uncredited transcription. Michel Bellavance (flute), Roy Howat (piano). Meridian CDE 84509 (England) 10G056 $17.98

FRANZ LÉHAR (1870-1948): Der Rastelbinder. Dating from 1902, Léhar himself called this "my first operetta" and it was his first great success in Vienna and came just after leaving his post as a military bandmaster. The extensive prelude is rather like a folk opera à la Smetana with lovely folk-like tunes and touches of melancholy; the first act a Viennese operetta where Léhar's aptness for the waltz first shows itself, and the second a military farce set in a barracks (where other dances such as the galop hold sway). The central character is not, however, the tinker of the title, but a Jewish onion dealer and Léhar uses Jewish melismas in his entrance song. The whole idea was quite daring given the anti-Semitism prevalent in Vienna of the time but it adds nicely to the local Slavic color of the early parts of the work. This is a 1981 Vienna Radio recording, previously unreleased, and contains all spoken dialogue which brings the set's total time to 136 minutes. 2 CDs. No libretto. Helga Papouschek, Elfie Hobarth (sopranos), Heinz Zednik, Adolf Dallapozza (tenors), Wiener Mozart Sängerknaben, Austrian Radio Choir and Symphony Orchestra; Hans Graf. CPO 777 038 (Germany) 10G057 $31.98

HUGO ALFVÉN (1872-1960): Symphonies Nos. 1-5, Swedish Rhapsodies Nos. 1-3, Drapa, Andante religioso, Suite Den förlorade sonen, En Skärgåardssägen, Suite Bergaungen, Elegy. All of Järvi's pioneering series of this fine Swedish Romantic's symphonies and tone poems is now available at mid-price! 5 CDs for the price of 3. Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra; Neeme Järvi. BIS CD-1478/80 (Sweden) 10G058 $53.98

CHARLES IVES (1874-1954): The Unknown Ives, Vol. 2 - Varied Air and Variations, Waltz-Rondo, Invention in D, Studies Nos. 1, 2, 4, 5 & 11, Storm and Distress, Impression of the "St. Gaudens" in Boston Common, The Celestial Railroad, Minuetto, Op. 4, 3 Quarter-Tone Pieces for 2 Pianos, Marches for Piano: No. 1 "Year of the Jubilee", No. 2 "Son of a Gambolier", No. 3 "Omega Lambda Chi", in G and C "See the Conquering Hero Comes", No. 5 "Annie Lisle", No. 6 "Here's to Good Old Yale", The Circus Band, GEORGE EDWARD IVES: Fourth Fugue. A second (and final) volume of revised, newly edited unpublished piano pieces (74 minutes worth) from throughout Ives' composing career offers the Ives collector more thorny, visionary, knuckle-busting material to delight and amaze. 16 pages of detailed notes help us see the composer through his music in a way which is a model of annotation. Donald Berman (piano), Stephen Drury (second piano). New World 80618 (U.S.A.) 10G059 $16.98

KAROL SZYMANOWSKI (1882-1937): Complete Songs for Voice and Piano - 6 Songs, Op. 2, 3 Fragments from Poems by Jan Kasprowicz, Op. 5, The Swan, Op. 7, 4 Songs, Op. 11, 3 Soldiers' Songs, Young highlanders descend, singing, 5 Songs, Op. 13, 3 Songs, Op. 32 (Piotr Beczala [tenor]), Colorful Songs, Op. 22, Songs of the Infatuated Muezzin, Op. 42, 7 Songs, Op. 54, Kurpian Songs, Op. 58, In the flowering meadows (Juliana Gondek [soprano]), 6 Songs, Op. 20, Love Songs of Hafis, Op. 24, The Grave of Hafis, Op. posth., 4 Songs, Op. 41, 12 Songs, Op. 17 (Urszula Kryger [mezzo]), Songs of the Fairy Princess, Op. 31, Slopiewnie, Op. 46bis, 3 Lullabies, Op. 48, Children's Rhymes, Op. 49, Vocalise-Étude, Lonely moon, Op. 31/1 (Iwona Sobotka [soprano]). This was an enormous undertaking and a must-have for anyone interested in Szymanowski or in the song in the 20th century. As you can tell from the quantity of songs, Szymanowski wrote in the genre in all three of his stylistic periods and so we have an early batch (1900-1914) of material which is in the German lied tradition of Wolf and Richard Strauss and first the Young Poland movement and then German modernists furnished the texts. The composer's exotic, "oriental" period (so well-known to orchestral collectors for his Song of the Night symphony) lasted from 1914-18, in which Persian and Arabic sources produced music of heightened sensuality and languid color. Finally, Szymanowski returned, in his full maturity, to Polish folk music, particularly from the highland region of the Tatra mountains. Very detailed, well-written and readable texts make this box a collector's delight. 4 CDs for the price of 3. Polish, German-English texts. Reinild Mees (piano). Channel Classics CCS 19398 (Netherlands) 10G060 $53.98

JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH (1685-1750)/SAMUIL FEINBERG (1890-1962): Prelude and Fugue in E Minor, BWV 548, Largo from Trio Sonata No. 5, BWV 529, Allein Gott in der Höh sei Ehr, BWV 662, 663 & 711, An Wasserflüssen Babylon, BWV 653, Ein fest Burg ist unser Gott, BWV 720, Von Gott will ich nicht lasst walten, BWV 647, Kommst du nun, Jesu, vom Himmel herunter, BWV 650, Herr Jesu Christ, dich zu uns wend, BWV 655, Jesus Christus, unser Heiland, BWV 665, Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland, BWV 659, Ach bleib' bei uns, Herr Jesu Christ, BWV 649, Valet will ich dir geben, BWV 735, Concerto in A Minor (after Vivaldi), BWV 593. Prior to the BIS releases of his complete piano sonata, Feinberg was known, if at all, as a great pianist and, particularly, for his recording of the Well-Tempered Clavier. Now, Hyperion give us his complete solo Bach transcriptions which shine a light on Feinberg as transcriber, pianist and musical theorist - 91 minutes of (mostly) CD premieres. 2 CDs for the price of 1. Martin Roscoe (piano). Hyperion CDA 67468 (England) 10G061 $17.98

KALERVO TUUKKANEN (1909-1979): Overture to The Loggers, Op. 1, Serenata giocosa, Op. 4, Evening Song, Op. 9/3, Midsummer Dance, Op. 9/4, Little Suite for Strings from Cloud, Romantic Moments, Op. 8, Tempus festum, Op. 53. The second appearance of music by this late Romantic Finnish composer (over a decade ago, his third symphony "The Sea" and second violin concerto were recorded by Finlandia) brings mostly music for strings. The overture and the Serenata are for chamber orchestra, with winds, and are strongly Sibelian in many places, while the remainder of the works are for string orchestra. Mostly cheerful, often carefree, with a few moments of introspection, they are the sort of things Elgar would have written if he were Finnish and we can't think of a better recommendation than that! Joensuu City Orchestra; Hannu Koivula. Alba ABCD 189 (Finland) 10G062 $16.98

ARTHUR HONEGGER (1892-1955): Jeanne d'Arc au bûcher (sung in German). Yes, it's not in the original French but there also aren't very many recordings of it around, so, if you don't know this work and its striking juxtapositions of styles (in the shape of a medieval mystery play, we have spoken theatre, melodrama, arioso writing, Gregorian chant echoes, jazz rhythms, courtly elegance and choral frenzy) which produce a significant dramatic impact, then this 1991 (previously unreleased) live recording from the Alte Oper, Frankfurt, will certainly deliver the goods. Synopses included. Susanne Altschul (soprano), Hersfeld Festival Choir, Krakow Radio Symphony Orchestra; Siegfried Heinrich. VMS 152 (Austria) 10G063 $17.98 >

LENNOX BERKELEY (1903-1989): 6 Preludes, Op. 23, 3 Pieces, Op. 2, Paysage, Scherzo, Op. 32/2, Sonata in A, Op. 20, 3 Mazurkas, Op. 32/1, Improvisation on a Theme of Manuel de Falla, Op. 55/2, Concert Study in E Flat, Op. 48/2, MICHAEL BERKELEY (b.1948): Strange Meeting. The piano was Lennox Berkeley's own instrument and the limpid, Gallic transparency that characterises much of his music is especially prominent on the keyboard. Ravel was a friend and many of the short pieces have a grace which we naturally associate with that composer while the large-scale sonata (24 minutes, from 1945 and written for Curzon) shows the building of structures through organic growth and rhythmic and thematic allusions familiar from his larger orchestral works. Michael's piece, suggested by the title of a Wilfred Owen poem, dates from 1974-8, is still in his tonal, quite approachable period and is a vivid depiction of a battle to the death of two soldiers in World War I. Margaret Fingerhut (piano). Chandos 10247 (England) 10G064 $17.98

LOU HARRISON (1917-2003): Suite No. 2 for Strings, Suite for Symphonic Strings, Concerto for Pipa and String Orchestra. Harrison collectors are in for a real treat here: the first recording in the original, string-orchestra version, of the 1948 Suite No. 2 and the first complete recording of the nine-movement (a previous recording omitted two movements) Suite for Symphonic Strings (1960), each of which has chunks of material from all over Harrison's previous career. The latter uses six pieces which existed in various forms but which were never performed, several of which are extremely dissonant and densely contrapuntal (dating to the period just after his nervous breakdown in the late 1940s) while others are peaceful and lyrical. World premiere recording of the 1997 pipa concerto which, in true Harrison fashion, uses the Chinese instrument to imitate various Western instruments (balalaika, mandolin) as well as finishing up the piece with an early music genre, the estampie, wrapping up everything in his characteristic, one-worldly manner. Wu Man (pipa), The New Professionals Orchestra, London; Rebecca Miller. Mode 140 (U.S.A.) 10G065 $17.98

BERND ALOIS ZIMMERMANN (1918-1970): Intercommunicazione, Capriccio, Présence, Sonata for Violin Solo, 4 Short Studies for Cello Solo. Famous for his harrowing multimedia opera Die Soldaten and for committing suicide at the age of 52, Zimmermann is rightly regarded as a composer of considerable depth and an intense, personal vision. Stripped down to its essentials in these chamber works, Zimmermann's bold and free musical language emerges the more remarkably, demonstrating his 'pluralistic' compositional techniques and their disquieting effect on the listener's perception of time. Most eyebrow-raising, perhaps, is the early folk-song based piano Capriccio, sounding like Grainger and Bartók collaborating on a reconstruction of a John Foulds manuscript; not what you might expect of Zimmermann, yet already juxtaposing disparate thematic elements in a highly idiosyncratic manner. Elsewhere in the solo string works we encounter the dodecaphony overlain with rich texture that we might expect, and in the trio work Présence, we are back in familiar Zimmermann territory, despite the restricted forces, with depicted 'characters' from all over literature, quotations from Strauss, Prokofiev, Stockhausen. Peter Sheppard Skærved (violin), Friedrich Gauwerky (cello), Ian Pace (piano). Albedo ALBCD 022 (Norway) 10G066 $17.98

GISELHER KLEBE (b.1925): Poèma drammatico for 2 Pianos and Orchestra, Op. 130, Sogetti cavati primo & secondo for 2 pianos, Opp. 122 & 129, Solo Piano: Widmungen, Op. 115, Zornige Lieder ohne Worte, Op. 118, Meine Enkelkinder und ich: Mira, Maya, Tim Christian und ihr Opa, Op. 140, Thema und 39 Variationen, Op. 142. Although Klebe technically writes "atonal" music (many of the short solo and duo pieces here are derived from the note values of the names of their dedicatees), it is also very expressive music with a high degree of coloristic and sonoristic interest and adventurous piano-lovers may find it attractive. The only orchestral piece - the Poèma - is based on several Verdi quotations, although in the language they have been transferred to, the average listener will be hard-pressed to identify any, but there is an undeniable sense or urgency and dramatic sweep throughout its 18 minutes. Mid-price. Silke-Thora Matthies, Christian Köhn (pianos), SWR Symphony Orchestra Baden-Baden and Freiburg; Peter Ruzicka. Marco Polo 8.225290 (New Zealand) 10G067 $9.98

ALBERT LEMELAND (b.1932): Ballades du soldat, Op. 171, Épilogue "à l'étale de basse-mer" for Soprano, Chorus and Ensemble, Op. 164. The latest release of music from this composer so much of whose work is inspired by the American liberation of France contains four sets of piano miniatures (totalling 14 pieces) which are based on fragments of soldiers' poetry, written between 1942-45 and published in the magazine "Yank". They are miniature tone-pictures, simple in style but amply representing the texts which are included in the booklet. The Épilogue is a 17-minute work, to Lemeland's own poetry, which is a lyrical, heartfelt tribute to the American dead in Normandy. French-English texts. Jean-Pierre Ferey (piano), Carole Farley (soprano), Ensemble Vocal Francine Bessac, Ensemble Instrumental de Grenoble; Marc Tardue. Skarbo DSK 2041 (France) 10G068 $18.98

Hungaroton Special Imports - not released in the U.S.

We're happy to report that these five titles are all in stock, having arrived along with September's whose back-orders will be filled this month. We're down to our last few Hungaroton imports, which will probably not appear until the December catalogue.

Collectors of 20th century music should look for special imports on the Norwegian Aurora and Hemera labels next month(we hope - they've been on order for a month now already...)

ERZSÉBET SZÖNYI (b.1924): Organ Concerto, 6 Medieval Hymns for Women's Choir, String Trio, Harp, Organ and Percussion, Pictures of Jerusalem for Piano Duo, Harp Quintet, 2 Songs for Soprano and Piano. A respected pillar of Hungarian musical pedagogy, Szönyi's compositions are in a tonal, approachable style although we have the date of composition of only one of these works - the 1958 organ concerto, whose three movements and 26 minutes have a Gallic flavor and a generally reserved, lyrical feel. The Hymns are lovely pieces, differing in temperament but in general luminous and clear-textured pieces where the instruments often comment rather than merely accompany. The shorter harp quintet also is French in style and the Jerusalem Pictures not too exotic in their representations of four aspects of that city. Hungarian, French-English texts. Gábor Lehotka (organ), Hungarian State Orchestra; Gyula Németh, Pécs University Female Choir w/other artists, Duo Egri & Pertis, Andrea Kocsis (harp), Danubius String Quartet, Martine de Craene (soprano), Gilbert de Greeve (piano). Hungaroton HCD 32246 (Hungary) 10G069 $17.98 >

ZOLTÁN JENEY (b.1943): Sostenuto for Orchestra, El silencio for Female Voice and String Quartet, Spaziosa calma... for Female Voice and Chamber Ensemble, Self-quotations for 5 Instruments, Bird Call for Female Choir. Regarded as a major figure in the Hungarian avant-garde, Jeney's chosen language is one in which changing textures and variations in timbral combinations of instruments (played more or less conventionally) playing chord sequences which are, for the most part, not especially dissonant, substitutes for the harmonic or rhythmic progressions of traditional musical styles. Not terribly avant-garde, in other words. In the case of the more recent works, like the lightly humorous Bird Call or the less obviously consonant Self-quotations, this gives rise to Reichian progressions of metamorphosing fragments; attractive patterns, easy to follow. Sostenuto for orchestra, the earliest work here, does less in a longer span of time, and is generally more harmonically ambiguous - if not exactly the evil twin, maybe the clinically depressed one, of Howard Skempton's Lento. Italian, Hungarian, Spanish-English texts. Budapest Symphony Orchestra; Zsolt Serei, Luisa Castellani, Zsuzsanna Lukin (voices), Componensemble, ASKO Ensemble, Györ Girls' Choir; Péter Eötvös, Miklós Szabó. Hungaroton HCD 32050 (Hungary) 10G070 $17.98 >

LÁSZLÓ KIRÁLY (b.1954): City of Acacias for Orchestra, Trips around Boswil for Ensemble, A Love's Etaps for Mezzo-Soprano and Orchestra, Nostalgia and Scherzo for Violin and Ensemble, Valse triste for Clarinet and Piano. Király is of the post-Darmstadt generation who obviously are delighted to be able to write tonal, romantic-style music and to actually hear it performed and recorded. The largest work here, 1989's City of Acacias, is a five-movement suite based on a contemporary Romanian novel (from which quotes are printed which illustrate each movement) which is really a large-scale tone-poem, lushly orchestrated yet not sounding in any way like Hollywood pastiche or neo-anything. Trips around Boswil (1986) is a 15-minute depiction of the landscapes around the eponymous Swiss town which is slightly more abstract in its conveying of impressions and emotions. Hungarian-English texts. Lúcia Megyesi-Schwartz (mezzo), Budapest Symphony Orchestra; János Kovács, László Kovács, New Music Studio Miskolc; György Selmeczi, János Selmeczi (violin), Camerata Transsylvanica; Selmeczi, József Balogh (clarinet), József Gábor (piano). Hungaroton HCD 31954 (Hungary) 10G071 $17.98 >

LÁSZLÓ TIHANYI (b.1956): Summer Music, Winterszenen, Nachtszene, Irrlichtspiel, L'Épitaphe du Soldat, White Words for Soprano and Ensemble. Whether taking his inspiration - and elemental material - from Schubert (Winterszenen), Stravinsky (L'epitaphe) or re-inventing his own material in two works derived from Winterszenen, Tihanyi successfully creates an unmistakable sound-world of his own. Fragments of borrowed material are woven into shimmering abstract textures in a freely atonal language admitting elements of aleatoric technique, yet grounded in classical and pre-classical structures and a persistent background of tonality derived from his earlier models. Ildikó Line (violin - Irrlichtspiel), Márta Kosztolányi (soprano), Intermodulation Chamber Ensemble; László Tihanyi. Hungaroton HCD 31792 (Hungary) 10G072 $17.98 >

KAMILLÓ LENDVAY (b.1928): Musica la dolce - una serenata per archi, JÓZSEF SÁRI (b.1935): Fossilien, MÁTÉ HOLLÓS (b.1954): Omaggio No. 1 (a Szeged), ANDRÁS SZÖLLÖSY (b.1921): Concerto No. 3, BARNABÁS DUKAY (b.1950): Incandescent in the Fires, PÉTER GAZDA (b.1948): Les mystères de la naissance. This collection of works for string orchestra runs through a variety of styles, from Lendvay's tonal, three-movement serenade-like work of 1995 to the various serial applications (often ingenious and generally involving and approachable if not, of course, tune-drenched) of Szöllösy (1968) and Gazda (the latter using the Fibonacci principle to govern his tone-row) while Dukay constructs a piece from a process involving nine instruments and 81 long notes, Sári (1974) varies 12 formal units rhythmically and melodically and Hollós (1991) employs variation technique around a tonal center in his slightly uneasy sounding homage. Franz Liszt Chamber Orchestra; Péter Gazda. Hungaroton HCD 31766 (Hungary) 10G073 $17.98 >

CHRISTOPHER GUNNING (b.1944): Symphony No. 1, Piano Concerto, Storm!. You would have to be a pretty unhappy specimen not to find something to enjoy on this disc. Gunning has a natural eloquence and a readily communicative style, doubtless honed by his extensive work in music for film and television. A Rubbra pupil, he shares with his teacher a gift for harmonic richness (in an unabashedly tonal idiom) combined with a clear, uncluttered directness of expression. One might also detect shades of Holst here and there, especially in the symphony. The fine piano concerto is conventional in form, with two lively outer movements - sometimes recalling neoclassical Stravinsky , or Shostakovich, but not sufficiently to strike one as derivative - bracketing a slow movement which plumbs greater emotional depths in an atmosphere of Busonian harmonic ambiguity and unease. Storm! is first cousin to the one in Peter Grimes, a tone-poem of graphic vividness. The symphony, an unbroken 25-minute expanse, explores different moods and the interplay of themes varies as the music progresses in a free and fairly loose structure, valuing vividness of image over formal strictness in a most appealing essay in the genre. Olga Dudnik (piano), Slovak Radio Symphony Orchestra; Christopher Gunning. Albany TROY 686 (U.S.A.) 10G074 $16.98

THOMAS L. READ (b.1938): On October Ground, JOHN WINSOR: 3 Essays, L. JOHNERNST: Vermilion River, GUSTAV HOYER (b.1972): The Lion Triumphant, NANCY BLOOMER DEUSSEN (b.1931): Peninsula Suite, FREDERIC GLESSER (b.1956): Dazyes for Horn and Percussion. Again, this collection of new (almost all) orchestral pieces runs the gamut from the very conservative (Deussen's Vaughan Williams-like suite for string orchestra) to the moderately modern (Winsor's non-diatonic and somewhat harmonically adventurous yet interesting and approachable Essays), with Hoyer's 16-minute piece, inspired by C. S. Lewis, being the most immediately attractive, sounding like very good film or incidental music. Read's ten-minute depiction of autumn in New England describes a state of mind as much as physical geography while Ernst's 11-minute tone poem is an amiable addition to the catalogue of river tone-pictures. Philharmonia Bulgarica; Robert Ian Winstin. ERM Media ERM-6696 (U.S.A.) 10G075 $14.98

MICHAEL TORKE (b.1961): Green, Purple, Ecstatic Orange, Ash, Bright Blue Music. As many composers are doing these days, Torke has rescued his old Argo recordings and reissued them on his own label. Full of youthful kinetic energy and dynamism, this music was post-minimalist in its relative brevity yet it still uses repetetive techniques - a kind of extended variation form - which make it up-front, in-your-face and in no doubt of what Torke means. We also find out from the notes (in conversation/interview style) that Torke is synaesthetic, which finally explains why his works are titled with color terms. Baltimore Symphony Orchestra; David Zinman. Original 1991 Argo release. Ecstatic Records ERO92201 (U.S.A.) 10G076 $16.98

PHILIP GLASS (b.1937): The Concerto Project, Vol. 1 - Cello Concerto, Concerto Fantasy for 2 Timpanists and Orchestra. These two works of 2000 and 2001 are further evidence of Glass' evolution away from simple minimalism in which very little happens over a very long period of time to a more dramatic, eventful and gripping style. Melodies exist, are transformed but at a higher speed, lending more urgency and less of a hypnotic quality to the music. Both works have great energy - not surprisingly when you have two people with sticks hammering away at 14 timpani - and the cello concerto considerable lyricism and both have many episodes which sound like great film music as well. Julian Lloyd Webber (cello), Evelyn Glennie, Jonathan Hass (timpani), Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra; Gerard Schwarz. Orange Mountain Music OMM 0014 (U.S.A.) 10G077 $17.98

PHILIP GLASS (b.1937): Music from The Hours. Pianist Riesman has already produced a three-movement piano concerto based on the score to this film and then was commissioned by Paramount Pictures to make a book of arrangements for solo piano. Here they are - 14 cues, totalling 57 minutes. Michael Riesman (piano). Orange Mountain Music OMM 0012 (U.S.A.) 10G078 $17.98

JOHN ADAMS (b.1947): Shaker Loops, The Wound-Dresser for Baritone and Orchestra, Berceuse élégiaque, Short Ride in a Fast Machine. Two of Adams' most performed pieces are included in this portrait of America's most popular minimalist. It will never be less expensive to find out whether this brand of the genre is your cup of tea or not. Nathan Gunn (baritone), Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra; Marin Alsop. Naxos American Classics 8.559031 (U.S.A.) 10G079 $6.98

MICHAEL DAUGHERTY (b.1954): Philadelphia Stories for Orchestra, UFO for Percussion and Orchestra. UFO (1999) has plenty of visual effects which go unnoticed in a recording (Glennie entering the orchestra hall dressed as an alien and playing a waterphone and mechanical siren?) but the otherworldly character desired is achieved by imaginatively chosen percussion objects (a few of which are "unidentified metal" in a tribute to the Roswell fragments) and the whole 36 minutes has a brightly-colored cartoon quality to it - as close as Daugherty has come to this since Metropolis Symphony. Philadelphia Stories (2001) is a three-movement work (the composer calls it his third symphony) inspired by the sounds and rhythms of that city, past and present, and closes with a huge tribute to Stokowski in the form of a pseudo-Bachian "orchestral transcription". Evelyn Glennie (percussion), Colorado Symphony Orchestra; Marin Alsop. Naxos American Classics 8.559165 (U.S.A.) 10G080 $6.98

JOHN FRANDSEN (b.1956): Symphony No. 1 "The Dance of the Demons", Concerto for Cello and Orchestra "Hymn to the Ice Queen", Amalie Suite, At the Yellow Emperor's Time - Aria for Soprano and Orchestra. Collectors will probably know Frandsen as a conductor but this disc of orchestral works shows us a composer who writes very approachable music which includes many fragmentary echoes of late Romanticism but which are adroitly hidden in his delicate and refined soundscapes. Frandsen evokes the shimmering, icy quality of the North Cape in summer in his 1998 concerto and a more sulfurous region in the 1988 symphony, whose orchestration remains refined, not the pile-driver you might expect from the title. The two short pieces are closer to late Romanticism, the aria with a naggingly lovely, short melody which is repeated and varied and the suite (1985) a melancholy piece which seems to evoke the ghosts of Berg and Mahler. Mid-price. Djina Mai-Mai (soprano), Svend Winsløv (cello), Odense Symphony Orchestra; Christian Eggen. Dacapo Open Space 8.226508 (Denmark) 10G081 $9.98

CORNEL TARANU (b.1934): Simfonia brevis, Symphony No. 2 "Aulodica", Symphony No. 3 "Signs", Symphony No. 4 "Ritornellos". These four highly concentrated symphonies chart the progress of one of the most important figures in Romanian contemporary music. All but the first are single-movement structures, and there is a general trend away from the modality of the first, via an increasingly serial langauge and controlled aleatory (Lutoslawaki-like; one finds more and more evidence that the great Polish composer has become a mentor in absentia to a generation of European symphonists) and (somewhat) extended instrumental techniques, toward a highly-charged free atonality common to both the third and fourth symphonies, incorporating elements of all the previous techniques and achieving a synthesis that is very much the composer's own language. Cluj-Napoca Philharmonic Orchestra; Mircea Cristescu, Emil Simon, Cristian Mandeal, Romanian Radio Symphony Orchestra; Ludovic Bacs. Electrecord EDC 470 (Romania) 10G082 $13.98

CALIN IOACHIMESCU (b.1949): Concerto for Trombone, Double Bass and Orchestra, SORIN LERESCU (b.1953): Sideshow for Trombone and Ensemble, FRED POPOVICI (b.1948): to Traiect for Barrie for Trombone and Ensemble, LIVIU DANCEANU (b.1954): Seven Days - Concerto for Trombone and Orchestra. The atmosphere of Darmstadt and spectralism loom large over Ioachimescu's concerto, with its tectonic blocks of sound against which the trombone and contrabass soloists exploit the full resources of their instruments, with every available extended technique employed. This makes Lerescu's work sound almost conventional, though here there is a strong theatrical element, with the soloist moving about in his interaction with the ensemble. Popovici favors mathematical procedures for the construction of his material, and the clear and precise nature of the spectrally and fractally derived (from natural trombone sounds) thematic material and its use demonstrates the effectiveness of his sophisticated techniques while never permitting them to become a distracting end in themselves. Danceanu explores new textures and instrumental timbres from the soloist and ensemble and through the almost continuous use of a synthesizer; the work is a depiction of the seven days of creation, and vividly atmospheric and pictorial; it is the most immediately approachable of these four contrasting and marvellously varied works. Barrie Webb (trombone), Dorin Marc (double bass), Mihail Jora Philharmonic Orchestra, Bacau; Ovidiu Balan, Traiect Ensemble; Sorin Lerescu, Romanian Radio Chamber Orchestra; Cristian Brancusi. Metier MSC CD92021 (England) 10G083 $16.98

MARLOS NOBRE (b.1939): For Orchestra: In memoriam, Mosaico, Convergencias, Biosfera for String Orchestra, O canto multiplicado for Voice and Orchestra, Divertimento for Piano and Orchestra, Concerto breve for Piano and Orchestra, Rhythmetron for Percussion, Variaçoes ritmicas for Piano and Brazilian Percussion, Sonancias I for Piano and Percussion, Sonancias II for 2 Pianos and 2 Percussionists, Ukrinmakrinkrin for Voice, Winds and Piano. Dodecaphony and Brazilian rhythms might seem strange bedfellows. However, neither forms the predominant impression of Nobre's work. Certain textural elements -twittering abstract backgrounds to the musical argment for instance - suggest Lutoslawski, an acknowledged influence - but oddly enough, in the bold and big-boned orchestral works it is the 20th century's post-Nielsen symphonists from Northern Europe who are most strongly evoked. Early Stravinsky, Prokofiev (especially in writing for the solo piano) and Bartók are both recognisable presences as well. Just occasionally, a bit of 'local color' is provided by the choice of instruments or a recognisably Latin rhythm - predictably it is the works for percussion or featuring percussion in a concertante role in which this is most evident. The music is firmly rooted in tonality, whatever else was employed in the composer's workshop, and all the works make a vital and emotionally charged impression, the music as approachable as it is serious in intent and skillfully crafted. 2 CDs. Musica Nova Philharmonia, Musica Nova Ensemble; Marlos Nobre (piano), Geneva Percussion Ensemble, other artists. Leman Classics LC 44100 (Switzerland) 10G084 $33.98

ROBERT SAXTON (b.1953): Music to Celebrate the Resurrection, (English Chamber Orchestra; Steuart Bedford), I Will Awake the Dawn (BBC Singers; John Poole), In the Beginning, Violin Concerto (Tasmin Little [violin], BBC Symphony Orchestra; Matthias Bamert), Caritas (vocal soloists, English Northern Philharmonia; Diego Masson). A concern with spiritual conflict is often a guiding principle of Saxton's dramatically charged and impassioned music. In Music the resurrection in question is that of Coventry cathedral after the war. I will awake progresses from clamorous dissonance to the exultant light of hope, a trajectory shared by the more obviously secular concerto, which treats the soloist as a lone protagonist striving to rise above crushing menace in a flight toward hope and serenity. The opera Caritas proceeds in the opposite direction; a descent into madness, a warning of the destructive effect of dogma on the quest for personal faith. Saxton's music draws on the tonal language and direct clarity of dramatic expression of his sometime mentor, Britten, and his vocal writing shows an affinity with the older composer. This set demonstrates why it is one especially well worth listening to among his generation of British composers. 2 CDs. Texts included. Original 1990 Collins Classics and 1991-2 Lambourne Productions Ltd. recordings. NMC Ancora NMC D102 (England) 10G085 $31.98

ARMIN SCHIBLER (1920-1986): La Folie de Tristan for Singers, Reciters, Orchestra, Mixed Chorus, Jazz-rock Group and Tape. The multi-faceted Tristan legend receives another interpretation in what is best described as a mixed-media piece of music. Synthesized here are, broadly speaking, music-theatre of the Orff type, post-second-Viennese concert music echoing Stravinsky, Bartók and Frank Martin, and the incorporation of a jazz-rock element which will make one think of Bernstein's Mass. For all its stylistic diversity the piece hangs together surprisingly well, contains much music of serious emotional impact and ultimately succeeds in making a powerful dramatic and musical point. Pierre-André Blaser (tenor), Audrey Michael (soprano), Arlette Chédel (mezzo), Philippe Huttenlocher (baritone), Radio Suisse Romande Choir, Rockband of the Groupe instrumentale romand, Lausanne Chamber Orchestra; Jean-Marie Auberson. Jecklin JS 695 (Switzerland) 10G086 $17.98 >

ERMANNO MAGGINI (1931-1991): Torso III "5 Visoni" for Cello, Torso VIII for Clarinet, Cello and Piano, Torso IX for Cello, Torso X for Clarinet, Canto XI for Cello, Atem for Piano, Canto I-III "3 canti sacri" for Cello. Maggini's output resists ready classification. To describe it as conservative neo-something-or-other sounds patronising, yet there is very little about it that could not have happened before the composer was even born. Taken on its own terms, what is apparent is an eloquent lyricism and in general a seriousness of mood. The cumulative effect of these exquisitely crafted instrumental miniatures is of touring a museum in the company of an expert guide, appreciating the beauties of object from an earlier age while remaining unsure of their ambiguous purpose or origins. Trio Zemlinsky. Jecklin JS 295 (Switzerland) 10G087 $17.98 >

DANIEL GLAUS (b.1957): Toccata per Girolamo (... pour Claude) for Piano, JORGE PEPI (b.1962): Metamorfosis I for Piano, ALFRED ZIMMERLIN (b.1955): Klavierstück 2, JEAN-JACQUES DÜNKI (b.1948): Tétraptéron 0-IV for Piano, Clavichord, Harpsichord and Celesta, KARLHEINZ STOCKHAUSEN (b.1928): Skorpion and Fische from Tierkreis. These works utilise one, two or four members of the piano 'family' of instruments (plus subtle electronics in Tétraptéron). The extracts from Tierkreis, originally for mechanical chimes, sound quaintly impressionistic in this arrangement, while much of the rest of the music here is more determinedly modern-sounding. The common factor is the preoccupation with the many and various sonorities available from the most versatile group of instruments ever invented. Stéphane Reymond (piano, clavichord, harpsichord), Paul Clemann, Jean-Jacques Dünki (piano), Pierre Sublet (celesta). Jecklin JS 289 (Switzerland) 10G088 $17.98 >

KLAUS HUBER (b.1924): Auf die ruhige Nachtzeit for Soprano, Flute, Viola and Cello, MARIO PAGLIARINI (b.1963): Alcuni particolari oscuri for Clarinet, HANS ULRICH LEHMANN (b.1937): Osculetur me for Soprano and Bassett Horn, ELIANE ROBERT-GEORGE (b.1958): Adventure for Soprano, Viola and Lute, GAUDENZ DANUSER (b.1969): Meditazione I for Flute, Oboe, Violin and Cello, RUDOLF KELTERBORN (b.1931): Duet for Viola and Contrabass Clarinet, JÜRG WYTTENBACH (b.1935): Harmonie mit schräger Dämpfung for a Reciting, Singing Violinist. An intriguing mixture, featuring works written in the past few decades by living Swiss composers representing three generations. The elder statesman here is Huber, whose shadowy, very Second Viennese song cycle sets a tone of uneasy ambiguity for the entire program. Interestingly, it is the music by the other older composers that makes use of the most modern techniques - quarter-tones and extended techniques in the Kelterborn and Lehmann, deliberate and 'artless' grotesqueries in the Wyttenbach, for example. There is much to enjoy in the luminous and lyrical vocal writing of the various sung works and in general this is a very approachable sampler of modern European contemporary music. Ensemble MOBILE. Jecklin JS 296 (Switzerland) 10G089 $17.98 >

WALTHER GIGER (b.1952): Yuhi no mimi for Soprano, Baritone, Violin, Guitar and Double Bass. English translation of original texts. Setting a Japanese text, a subtle and equivocal exploration of emotions, feelings, loss and the uncertainty of fate, the piece is mostly cast in a highly stylized narrative/recitative style. The instrumental writing - very economically scored for 3 instruments, including the composer's own, the guitar - suggests elements of minimalism here and there, at which point the music is at its most tonal, especially in the introduction, but is mostly confined to providing a backdrop to the two solo voices, which carry most of the musical and dramatic argument, sometimes in extended melismatic lyrical lines of great, if slightly detached, beauty. Maria Glarner (soprano), Shigeo Ishino (baritone), OrchesTrio. Jecklin JD 315 (Switzerland) 10G090 $17.98 >

ULRICH GASSER (b.1950): Von der unerbittlichen Zufälligkeit des Todes for 6 Female and 6 Male Voices, 8 Flutes, 6 Sounding Stones and a Huge Room. Although described as an 'oratorio', this is really a piece of music theatre, or perhaps more accurately, a sonic 'installation'. It is a meditation on death, using texts by a number of writers, but for the most part it functions as an appropriately unsettling - sometimes downright shocking - sonic collage. It is not for nothing that the 'huge room' in which this live performance took place is credited as one of the instruments, along with six 'sounding stones' (basalt blocks rubbed and struck in various ways). One can imagine that live or in a multi-channel surround recording, the work's impact would be greatly enhanced; this 2-channel stereo recording is nonetheless sufficiently atmospheric to leave one in no doubt about the subject-matter, and raise a few goosebumps. Soloists, Flute Ensemble, Arthur Schneiter (sounding stones). Jecklin JD 312 (Switzerland) 10G091 $17.98 >

BRUNO MADERNA (1920-1973): Divertimento in due tempi for Flute and Piano, String Quartet, Honeyrêves for Flute and Piano, Aulodia per Lothar for Oboe d'amore and Guitar, Widmung for Violin, Serenata per un satellite for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, Violin and Marimba, Viola, Dialodia for Flute and Oboe. The medium of chamber music is a particularly fruitful one for composers of an experimental bent, often ensuring the participation of selected collaborators of sympathetic views, and allowing clarity of expression for the working out of techniques and innovations. For a composer like Maderna this participation was especially important, as his frequent and increasing use of aleatoric methods made the identification of his performers with his ideals of especial importance. And so we find that most of these pieces were written with a particular performer in mind, and we also find the fertile imagination of the composer - finding new sonorities from his instruments and freely experimenting with pitch and form. A clear and fascinating glimpse into the mind of one of the European avant-garde's most significant and inventive representatives. Ex Novo Ensemble. Stradivarius STR 33330 (Italy) 10G092 $17.98

JOËL-FRANÇOIS DURAND (b.1945): La terre et le feu for Oboe and Orchestra, Athanor for Orchestra, La mesure des choses III - La mesure de la terre et du feu for Oboe and Viola, Les reaisons des forces mouvantes for Organ. La terre et le feu uses microtones subtly yet tellingly, adding an extended melodic element to the material in addition to the customary coloristic effect. There is a kind of complexicist surface glitter and activity to the music but there seems not to be strict adherence to any particular school of composition, and the over-riding impression is of linear textures, ingenious counterpoint and - if one dare say it in this context - lyrical melodicism. The organ work has a great deal of Messiaen about it, alternating huge volcanic outbursts with extended chant-like recitatives in single lines or few canonically related parts. The orchestral work, full of slowly evolving textures like emerging structures in cooling magma; here musical structures seem subsumed in organic flow, though an external structure imposed by the composer is present, and the progression toward the final glowing peroration (surprisingly tonal!) seems as inevitable as it is dramatically satisfying. Gareth Hulse (oboe), London Sinfonietta, BBC Symphony Orchestra; Pierre-André Valade, Paul Silverthorne (viola), Hans-Ola Ericsson (organ of Luleå Cathedral, Gammelstad, Sweden). Mode 139 (U.S.A.) 10G093 $17.98

JOSEP MARIA MESTRES QUADRENY (b.1929): Quartet de catroc for String Quartet (Parrenin Quartet), Tramesa a Tàpies for Violin, Viola and Percussion (Grupo Círculo), Concert equinoccial for Percussion Soloist and Percussion Quartet (Xavier Joaquín, Percussions de Barcelona), Nocturnal for Flute, Clarinet and Piano (Gabriel Castellano [flute], Ramón Ceballos [clarinet], David Hurtado [piano]), Micos i papallones for Guitar and Percussion (Siegfried Behrens [guitar], Siegfried Fink [percussion]), Tocatina for Anisette Bottles (Percussions de Barcelona), Baràlia for Percussion Quartet (Percussions de Barcelona). This Catalan composer holds fast to æsthetic principles of uncompromising modernity while standing somewhat apart from the mainstream of European avant-garde composition. Aleatoric techniques and graphic notation form major components of his style, and concepts such as musical representations of the collisions between subatomic particles (an useful image, carrying as it does many implications of statistical and chaotic uncertainty) are important. The textures and sounds that the composer evokes from his abstract collages (sometimes admitting a regular pulse for a while, producing the effect of discovering a plain geometrical shape in an abstract painting) are fascinating and hold the listener's attention despite the absence of traditional musical forms and structures. Ars Harmonica AH 133 (Spain) 10G094 $17.98

MICHAEL HERSCH (b.1971): Milosz Fragments for Piano, Sonata No. 2 for Unaccompanied Cello, WOLFGANG RIHM (b.1952): Auf einem anderen Blatt for Piano, MORTON FELDMAN (1926-1987): Piano Piece (to Philip Guston), JOSQUIN DES PREZ (c.1440-1521): Mille Regretz, De profundis clamavi for Piano (transcr. Hersch). Hersch's own compositions, alternate fragmentary, atonal, gestural complexicism with Feldmanesque meditations on instrumental sonorities (the latter comparison pointed up by the inclusion of Feldman's brief piano piece in the program, while the Rihm, more capricious and incorporating more tonal elements, also suggests a degree of influence on Hersch). The sonata is, like the cycle of tiny piano pieces, a study in contrasts - between bare intervals rendered lush by the instrument's native warmth and vehement and intense music of far greater activity. Michael Hersch (piano), Daniel Gaisford (cello). Artemis Records ATM CD 1558 (U.S.A.) 10G095 $14.98

CONLON NANCARROW (1912-1997): 11 Studies for Player Piano (transcribed for piano duet), 3 Canons for Ursula, Tango?, 3 Two-Part Studies, Prelude, Blues, Sonatina. The constantly changing time signatures, polyrhythmic canons and various simultaneous tempi, often at extreme speeds, which characterize Nancarrow's player-piano pieces are here performed by real, living humans in four-hand transcriptions by the perfomers, Yvar Mikhashoff and Erik Oña. In addition, several solo pieces from the composer's pre-mechanical piano period are included as well as a transcription of the (otherwise unplayable) two-hand Sonatina of c.1945. Catnip for connoisseurs of the pianistically barely-possible! Bugallo-Williams Piano Duo. Wergo WER 6670-2 (Germany) 10G096 $19.98

Now Back in Print

GYÖRGY LIGETI (b.1923): Le Grand Macabre. Ligeti's biting musical wit and the dark humor which informs many of his works take full flight in his surreal and disturbing opera, its grimly ominous subject matter treated in a bizarre, over-the-top Grand Guignol manner, featuring many of the composer's boldest touches of musical theatricality. 2 CDs. German-English libretto. Dieter Weller, Penelope Walmsley-Clark and other vocal artists, ORF Choir, Arnold Schönberg Choir, Die Gumpoldskirchner Spatzen, Austrian Radio Symphony Orchestra; Elgar Howarth. Original 1991 Wergo release. Wergo WER 6170-2 (Germany) 10G097 $39.98

MAX STEINER (1888-1971): The Adventures of Mark Twain. This 1944 score includes some folk instruments - Hawaiian steel guitar, banjo and guitar - and a very difficult solo for a contrabassoonist in the cue "Frogs" and otherwise makes much noisy and boisterous use of American tunes with an Ivesian Yankee energy. By eliminating the overture (all material later heard often enough) and repetitive cues, arranger John Morgan cut the 100 minute score down to a CD-manageable 71 minutes. With the passing of this series from Marco Polo to Naxos (if it's even going to continue), the lavish presentation with multiple notes and photos is gone. Bill Whitaker's note is about a third the size of previous ones and there are no graphics. Unfortunate but at least we still have the music! Moscow Symphony Orchestra and Chorus; William Stromberg. Naxos Film Music Classics 8.557470 (New Zealand) 10G098 $6.98

KURT WEILL (1900-1950): Royal Palace, Op. 17 (Janice Watson [soprano], Stephen Richardson [bass-baritone], Ashley Holland [baritone], Richard Coxon [tenor], BBC Singers), Der Neue Orpheus, Op. 16 for Soprano, Violin and Orchestra (Kathryn Harries [soprano], Michael Davis [violin]), BBC Symphony Orchestra; Andrew Davis. Coming, in early 1926, right after Der Protagonist and the first opera in which Weill used jazz elements (and, particularly, the tango) and the saxophone, the score of Royal Palace was destroyed either by the Nazis or in an air raid during the war. Recorded here is a 1971 reconstruction from the piano score by Gunther Schuller and Noam Sheriff. Der Neue Orpheus was performed as a curtain-raiser to Royal Palace, both having texts by Iwan Goll and both having a Greek mythological character (in Royal Palace, it is Deianeira, Heracles' wife) who turns up in present-day Germany to absurd/ironic effect. German-English libretto and texts. Capriccio 60 106 (Germany) 10G099 $16.98

FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828): Overture to Alfonso und Estrella, D.732, Overture and Excerpts from Rosamunde, D.797, SCHUBERT/GASPAR CASSADÓ (1897-1966): Cello Concerto in A Minor. Cassadó's orchestration of Schubert's Arpeggione sonata may be very politically incorrect but no one can deny its beauty and effectiveness; this recording from March 1, 1929 may be its world premiere performance as well. Recorded 1927-29. Gaspar Cassadó (cello), Hallé Orchestra; Sir Hamilton Harty. ASV Hallé Tradition HLT 8003 (England) 10G100 $7.98

ARNOLD BAX (1883-1953): Fanfare for a Cheerful Occasion (Kneller Hall Musicians; Captain H.E. Adkins. 6/17/32), Mater ora filium (Leeds Festival Choir. 10/29/25), Tintagel, Mediterranean (New Symphony Orchestra; Eugene Goossens. 5/17/28, 5/23/28), Overture to a Picaresque Comedy (Orchestra; Hamilton Harty. 4/18/35), Morning Song (Maytime in Sussex) (Harriet Cohen [piano], Orchestra; Malcolm Sargent. 2/7/47), The Oliver Theme, The Pickpocketing, The Chase, Fagin's Romp and Finale from Oliver Twist (same as preceding. 9/1/48), Quiet Interlude and Gay March from Malta G.C. (London Symphony Orchestra; Muir Matheson. ?1944), Fanfares for the Wedding of T.R.H. Princess Elizabeth and The Duke of Edinburgh (Trumpeters of the Royal Military School of Music; Captain M. Roberts. 12/4/47). We thought that this collection of rare early Bax recordings would appeal to our many fans of this composer. Included are the first major orchestral recordings (of Tintagel and Mediterranean) as well as late fanfares written as Master of the King's Music. Symposium 1336 (England) 10G101 $17.98

Zarzuela Festival

Highlights and excerpts from the following composers and works: Amadeo Vives: Doña Francisquita, Reveriano Soutullo & Juan Vert: El último romántico, La leyenda del beso, José Serrano: Alma de Dios, La alegría del batallon, Los de Aragón, La reina mora, Ruperto Chapi: La Bruja, Las bravías, El barquillero, La chavala, Las hijas del Zebedeo, La patria chica, La revoltosa, Jacinto Guerrero: El huésped el sevilliano, Federico Moreno Torroba: Luisa Fernanda, Pablo Luna: La pícara molinera, Benamor, Tomás Breton: La verbena de la paloma, Gerónimo Giménez: El baile de Luis Alonso, Soleares, La Tempranica, Los borrachos, La boda de Luis Alonso, Enseñanza libre, Federico Chueca: La alegría de la huerta, Agua, azucarillos y aguardiente, La Gran Via, El año pasado por agua, El bateo, Pablo Luna: El niño judío, Francisco A. Barbieri: El barberillo de Lavapiés, Reveriano Soutullo: El último romántico. 3 CDs. Budget-price. José Carreras (tenor), Teresa Berganza (soprano), English Chamber Orchestra; Antoni Ros Marbá, Enrique García Asencio. Original 1975-77 Ensayo recordings. Brilliant Classics 92380 (Netherlands) 10G102 $16.98