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HENRY HOLDEN HUSS (1862-1953): Concerto for Piano and Orchestra in B Major, Op. 10, ERNEST SCHELLING (1876-1939): Suite Fantastique for Piano and Orchestra, Op. 7. Huss studied with Rheinberger and was a great admirer of Wagner whom he discussed at length in correspondance with fellow American composer Edward MacDowell. His concerto (from 1898), the only major piano concerto we can think of in B Major, contains echoes from the Liebestod (in the same key) and uses Wagnerian harmonic progressions. From its opening timpani roll, punctuated by trumpet calls and then a virtuoso rhetorical statement by the soloist, there is never a doubt that Huss' is meant to be an echt-Romantic concerto in the style of Liszt, Tchaikovsky and Brahms. The slow movement is a tranquil andante while the finale builds up a powerful head of steam with the first movement's main theme reappearing at its climax before a wild dash to its conclusion. Schelling was a pupil of Paderewski and Leschetizky, among others, and had an international career as a virtuoso soloist before settling in as music director of the Baltimore Symphony and conductor of the New York Philharmonic's Young Peoples' Concerts. His four-movement Suite opens in the style of a baroque opera recitative with the pianist as vocalist soloing in coruscating cadenzas before turning into a Hungarian flavored allegro marziale full of brilliant and assured piano writing. The second movement is an elfin dance in Moszkowskian vein, followed by an intermezzo in which the piano ruminates lyrically in daydreaming fashion. The homesick composer (the piece was written in 1906 while he was a student in Europe) mixed a Virginia Reel, Dixie, Way Down upon the Swanee River and Yankee Doodle in a powerful and exhilarating finale full of delightful pianistic and orchestrational surprises. Ian Hobson (piano), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra; Martyn Brabbins. Hyperion CDA 66949 (England) 09-001 $17.98

PAUL PARAY (1886-1979): Symphony No. 1 in C, Mass for the 500th Anniversary of the Death of Joan of Arc. Paray is best known for his eleven seasons as music director of the Detroit Symphony (1952-63) which produced many brilliant Mercury recordings of French repertoire. As a composer, Paray wrote two symphonies, the ballet Adonis troublé and a Fantasie for piano and orchestra as well as chamber and instrumental works. The symphony receiving its world premiere recording here dates from 1934. Reversing the typically French symphonic procedure of recalling the first movement's themes in the finale, Paray gives foretastes of the themes in movements 2-4 at the end of the first movement, which is dramatic, optimistic and confident with a hint of Franck and Schmitt to it. The second movement is quintessentially French with its lightly-worn melancholy, evoked by solo cor anglais while the tender and graceful Allegretto third movement has a taste of Fauré. A light, mischievous alla scherzando final movement suggests the carefree spirit of the young Poulenc. The Mass, premiered at the cathedral in Rouen in 1931 (and recorded for Mercury by Paray), was called by composer Florent Schmitt "one of the most touching works I know". From the Kyrie's opening fugue to its urgent climax, from the Gloria's Oriental colored alto solo and barbaric, dance-like climax, through the warlike Sanctus and the peaceful and serene Agnus dei with its quality of elegant pastorale, the Mass exhibits the clarity of expression and of orchestration we associate with the best French music. Lorna Heywood (soprano), Terry Patrick-Harris (mezzo), Joseph Harris (baritone), Jozik Koc (bass-baritone), Royal Scottish National Chorus and Orchestra; James Paul. Reference Recordings RR-78CD (U.S.A.) 09-002 $16.98

PETER MENNIN (1923-1983): Concertato (Moby Dick), Symphony No. 5, Fantasia for String Orchestra, Symphony No. 6. Mennin is probably the American composer still most unjustly neglected by record companies, so this new release fills a valuable gap with the only CD recordings of the Fantasia and the sixth symphony. The 23-year-old composer's Fantasia is in two movements, Canzona and Toccata, and exhibits the stylistic traits which were to inform all Mennin's works through the sixth symphony, namely the use of techniques of Renaissance choral music - imitative counterpoint and contrapuntal development - in a contemplative first movement and vigorous second. The Symphony No. 6, from 1953, is in three movements: a solemn opening maestoso gives way to an allegro which rapidly accelerates with breakneck intensity which finally ends in a guarded repose. The second movement, grave, is solemn and reflective with some dissonance offset by intense lyricism. The final movement combines scherzo and finale with music which again seethes with passion, building inexorably and obsessively to a triumphant conclusion. Albany Symphony Orchestra; David Alan Miller. Albany TROY 260 (U.S.A.) 09-003 $16.98

ALAN HOVHANESS (b.1911): The Holy City, Triptych, Meditation on Orpheus, HENRY COWELL (1897-1965): Music 1957, Synchrony. New to CD are Hovhaness' Triptych, which consists of a brief Ave Maria and cantatas for Christmas and Easter and combine the composer's typical mystical utterance with the ancient modes of polyphonic church music. Cowell's Synchrony is an orchestral score culled from a ballet written for Martha Graham in 1930 while Music 1957 uses a huge orchestra with added bells, celesta, five anvils and five tom-toms to create special coloristic effects for music of a folk, Celtic nature. Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Arthur Bennett Lipkin, Benita Valente (soprano), Bamberg Symphony Orchestra, Bay Rund Singers; Alfredo Antonini, Japan Philharmonic Orchestra; Akeo Watanabe, Polish National Radio Orchestra; William Strickland. Citadel CTD 88122 (U.S.A.) 09-004 $14.98

CRAWFORD GATES (b. 1921): The Promised Land. Described as "A Musical Play", this work was premiered in 1947 as part of Utah's centennial celebration. It depicts the Mormon migration from Nauvoo, Illinois to the Great Salt Lake in 1947, with the vocal soloists representing a fictional Mormon couple on the long trek. Hard to characterize precisely, the work combines elements of oratorio and Broadway musical (some of the sections could have come from Oklahoma!) with extended symphonic sections which can function as independent mini tone-poems. The orchestrations are lush, the forces huge and the result quite delightful and inimitable. JoAnn Ottley (soprano), Robert Peterson (baritone), Utah Chorale, Utah Symphony Orchestra; Crawford Gates. Citadel CTD 88127 (U.S.A.) 09-005 $14.98

VINCENT PERSICHETTI (1915-1987): Pageant, HALE SMITH (b. 1925): Expansions, HENRY BRANT (b.1913): Verticals Ascending, ROSS LEE FINNEY (1906-1997): Concerto for Alto Saxophone and Winds, ROBERT RUSSELL BENNETT (1894-1981): Symphonic Songs. The symphonic wind band is a long-standing American tradition, and a fine and versatile instrument it has provided for those composers who have seen fit to exploit its possibilities to the full. This disc sets out to demonstrate how exceedingly satisfying the results can be, by demonstrating the evolution of the wind band as a vehicle for "serious" composition, as represented by a wide cross-section of styles and composers from the second half of our century. This ranges from Hale Smith's Expansions, which seems to have taken its inspiration from some of the darker moments in Shostakovich's Fourth Symphony to Robert Russell Bennett's engagingly tuneful, witty and high-spirited Symphonic Songs. Frederick L. Hemke (saxophone), Northwestern University Symphonic Wind Ensemble; John P. Paynter. New World 80211 (U.S.A.) 09-006 $16.98

ANTHONY G. HOLLAND (b. 1955): Concerto for Piccolo, Concerto for Violin, New England Poems for Flute, Percussion and Narrator, 3 Pieces for Solo Guitar, Phádka a Variace for 2 Violins, Intensity 51.5+ for Solo Piano. Holland's concerto for piccolo was written to demonstrate, in the composer's words, "that the piccolo could be used as an expressive solo instrument." He has succeeded remarkably, creating an orchestral texture heavy on brass, woodwinds and percussion through which the piccolo cuts brightly in the first and third movements and over which it sings lyrically in the rhapsodic second movement. In a tonal, but modern idiom, this is a fresh, attractive and striking work. The same kind of original, compelling and highly attractive orchestration is present in the violin concerto, written for the well-known Czech violinist who performs it here. In three movements, allegro gioioso, adagio lamentoso and Scherzo, the soloist etches against this colorful backdrop a wide array of lyrical, discursive, dramatic and virtuosic themes. Peter Markovsky (piccolo), Orchestre d'Artistes; Anthony G. Holland, Frantiek Novotny (violin), Baldwin-Wallace Conservatory Orchestra; Dwight Oltman, Joel Brown (guitar), etc. Albany TROY 258 (U.S.A.) 09-007 $16.98

MALCOLM PEYTON: String Quartet, Songs from Walt Whitman for Soprano, Violin and Piano, Suite Nocturnale for Solo Viola. Peyton's half-hour-long quartet (1991-93) is in four movements, each of which features contrasting themes and moods. The composer acknowledges the influence of Bartók while echoes of the Second Viennese School also seem near. The Whitman songs, from 1980, set three complete poems and excerpts from Leaves of Grass in . Suite Nocturnale is a rare, extended work for the solo viola which offers the soloist grateful opportunities to show the lyrical qualities of his instrument in the opening elegie and closing berceuse which embrace a lively marche and discursive fantasie. Borromeo String Quartet, Jennifer Ayres (soprano), Joanna Kurkowicz (violin), Malcolm Peyton (piano), Jonathan Bagg (viola). Centaur CRC 2327 (U.S.A.) 09-008 $16.98

SEBASTIAN CURRIER (b. 1959): Vocalissimus, Theo's Sketchbook, Whispers. The music of Sebastian Currier, a faculty member at Juilliard school, is unmistakably contemporary while remaining very accessible. Both Vocalissimus and Theo's Sketchbook explore their themes though the device of expressing the point of view of different characters, a technique Currier has also used elsewhere. In the case of Vocalissimus the text (Wallace Stevens' To the Roaring Wind) is "interpreted" in eighteen different styles - optimist, extrovert, lunatic, and the like. Theo's Sketchbook charts the development of an imaginary composer's life and career, incorporating changing influences, preoccupations, life experiences and evolving technique. The music flows like quicksilver, presenting now one facet, now another, in a dazzling display of compositional virtuosity. Mosaic, Emma Tahmiziàn (piano). New World 80527 (U.S.A.) 09-009 $16.98

DEXTER MORRILL (b. 1938): String Quartet No. 2, Dance Bagatelles for Viola and Piano, Fantasy for Solo Cello, 3 Lyric Pieces for Violin and Piano. Morrill's music here is unproblematic and consists mostly of brief epigrammatic sketches, like line drawings. There is some jazz influence to add pungency, and rhythm-driven motion, more than harmonic progression, is of great importance to the composer. Tremont String Quartet, Laura Klugherz (violin, viola), Jill Timmons (piano). Capstone CPS 8642 (U.S.A.) 09-010 $16.98

BERNHARD HEIDEN (b. 1910): Sinfonia, INGOLF DAHL (1912-1970): Allegro and Arioso, ROBERT MUCZYNSKI (b. 1929): Quintet, Op. 45, IRVING FINE (1914-1962): Partita, NEVETT BARTOW (1939-1973): Divertimento. Five works for woodwind quintet, three dating from the 1940s - Heiden's neobaroque entry, Dahl's very difficult and dissonant piece and Fine's contrapuntally energetic five-movement work, much the longest here. Muczynski's 1985 composition shows lyrical restraint alternating with vigorous rhythmic drive while Bartow's only work for the genre makes for a jocular close. Pentaura. Centaur CRC 2337 (U.S.A.) 09-011 $16.98

HUGO WEISGALL (1912-1997): The Tenor: Opera in One Act. Soloists, Vienna State Opera Orchestra; Herbert Grossman, The Stronger: Opera in One Act. Johanna Meier (soprano), Aeolian Chamber Players; Hugo Weisgall, The Golden Peacock: 7 Popular Songs from the Yiddish. Judith Raskin (soprano), Morey Ritt (piano), Four Songs on Poems by Adelaide Cropsey. Carolyne Heafner (soprano), Dixie Ross Nell (piano). The Tenor is the major work here, a chamber opera in one act which shows clear allegiance to German models of the early part of the century and tells the story of a vain, self-absorbed operatic tenor and the destructive effect his weakness of character has on himself and others in an advanced polytonal, expressionistic style. But Weisgall was an American composer of Jewish origin, and this lends his work inflections not to be found in the music of the disciples of the Second Viennese School. These characteristics are much more evident in The Stronger, a one-act monodrama. The early songs are simple and beautiful, romantic yet definitely of this century, and The Golden Peacock skillfully recasts Yiddish folksong as art music. 2 CDs. CRI CD 757 (U.S.A.) 09-012 $33.98

GRANVILLE BANTOCK (1868-1946): Sappho: Prelude and Nine Fragments for Mezzo-Soprano and Orchestra, Sapphic Poem for Cello and Orchestra. Hyperion's fourth Bantock recording features the hour-long song cycle in which the composer set English translations of fragments of the Greek Aeolic poet Sappho. Bantock's wife Helen organized the existing fragments in their existing English translations, adding verses of her own to provide continuity and ultimately providing a less than true version of ancient Greek lyric but a passionate and intelligent Victorian reading of it. Her husband responded with opulent, exotic fin-de-siècle romanticism of a wholly personal style with a hint here or there of Delius and Grieg. The Prelude has often been performed as an independent symphonic poem. The coupling is one of seven tone poems for cello and orchestra which Bantock produced and is full of the same highly-charged erotic sentiment as the song-cycle. Susan Bickley (mezzo), Julian Lloyd Webber (cello), Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; Vernon Handley. Hyperion CDA 66899 (England) 09-0 13 $17.98

STEVEN WATSON (b.1955): O Captain! My Captain!, Autumn Boughs, Symphonic Study. Watson is a young English composer from Chester whose cantata O Captain! My Captain!, to texts by Walt Whitman, inhabits a sound world close to that of Vaughan Williams. In its half-hour length the music runs the gamut from quiet contemplation to a furious sea-battle to a sober conclusion, depicting the sea in all of its physical and symbolic aspects. Autumn Boughs, for strings, is a study in the moods and emotions evoked by the fall: November winds whistle and fallen leaves swirl amid moments of still reflection and elegiac wistfullness. Symphonic Study is for large symphony orchestra and, in sonata form, follows in the great romantic tradition of orchestral etudes beginning with Dvorák. Jeremy Huw Williams (baritone), Esterházy Chamber Choir, London Philharmonic Choir and Orchestra; David Angus. Herald HAVPCD 198 (England) 09-014 $18.98

WILLIAM BAINES (1899-1922): The Chimes, Paradise Gardens, 7 Preludes, Coloured Leaves, Silverpoints, Idyll (Nocturne), Tides, The Naiad, Twilight Pieces, Pool Lights, Etude in F Sharp Minor. It is hard to decide which is more unfair - that a prodigious talent such as that of William Baines should be cut short by tuberculosis at the age of 23, or that in such a ridiculously brief life he managed to produce such a substantial body of fine and beautiful music. The presence of Scriabin undoubtedly looms large in the background to the young composer's harmonic thinking, and perhaps the most apt comparison is with a fellow Englishman of mystical leanings, Cyril Scott, but there is certainly an individual voice developing here, and the results are worthy to stand comparison with Scott, Balfour Gardiner and the like. Titles like "Coloured Leaves", "Labyrinth (A Deep Sea Cave)" and "The Burning Joss-Stick" (yes, really - and the climax of the latter suggests the inhalation of something of a more stimulant nature than incense!) owe something to Scott, and may suggest a sepia-tinted olde-worlde view of Blavatskyan mysticisn, but the music stands on its own merits, and will not disappoint. Eric Parkin (piano). Priory PRCD 550 (England) 09-015 $16.98

ROBERT SIMPSON (b.1921): String Quartet No. 13, String Quintet No. 2, Clarinet Quintet. The final quartet to reach CD in this complete series is the most compact of Simpson's late quartets. In four movements played without a break the work encompasses an athletic allegro, a meditative andante, an intense, hard-driven vivace and a final, chorale-like andante. The quintet is Simpson's last work to date. Completed in 1994, it is severe in character, alternating tough contrapuntal writing with austere, somber lyricism. The coupling is the half-hour long clarinet quintet from 1968, a five-movement work of contrapuntal expansiveness demonstrating Simpson's full range of expressive and creative powers. Thea King (clarinet), Christopher van Kampen (cello), Delmé Quartet. Hyperion CDA 66905 (England) 09-016 $17.98

CHARLES VILLIERS STANFORD (1852-1924): Clarinet Sonata, Op. 129, HOWARD FERGUSON (b. 1908): 4 Short Pieces, Op. 6, GERALD FINZI (1901-1956): 5 Bagatelles, Op. 23, WILLIAM HURLSTONE (1876-1906): 4 Characteristic Pieces, HERBERT HOWELLS (1892-1983): Clarinet Sonata, ARTHUR BLISS (1891-1975): Pastoral, FRANZ REITZENSTEIN (1911-1968): Arabesques, Op. 47, ARNOLD COOKE (b. 1906): Clarinet Sonata in B Flat. Originally released more than 15 years ago, these two discs offered a broad perspective of 20th century British clarinet writing, from Stanford's late Romantic sonata of 1911 to Reizenstein's brief Arabesques of 1968. All tonal and approachable, they are beautifully written for the instrument and make for excellent value in this Dyad incarnation. 2 CDs for the price of one. Thea King (clarinet), Clifford Benson (piano). Hyperion Dyad CDD 22027 (England) 09-017 $17.98

NICHOLAS MAW (b. 1935): Ghost Dances, La Vita Nuova, Roman Canticle. Maw is sure-footed in his utilisation of the possibilities of instrumental forces and the human voice, unafraid to exploit freely contemporary idioms and equally freely acknowledges the influence of the past - tonal harmony, big symphonic construction, in order to express his own individual ideas, which turn out to be a kind of neo-Romanticism. Ghost Dances is an imaginary ballet in 14 sections, playing games with the traditions of ballet music by invoking the distorted "ghosts" of memory, dream, even nightmare. The two Italianate vocal works set love poetry; of the Renaissance in the case of La Vita Nuova, and of Browning ("Two in the Campagna") for Roman Canticle. The economical instrumentation highlights the fine voice writing to perfection. Carmen Pelton (soprano), William Sharp (baritone), 20th Century Consort; Christopher Kendall. ASV DCA 999 (England) 09 -018 $16.98

E.J. MOERAN (1894-1950): String Quartet in E Flat, String Quartet in A Minor, String Trio in G. Here is the first recording of Moeran's E Flat quartet, apparently an early work, discovered only after his death among his papers by his widow. In two movements, it reveals a classic English pastoralism in its first movement and a strong folk element in its second. The A Minor quartet receives its first digital recording here: a three-movement work from 1921 it also is steeped in English folk music with its pentatonic modality. The 1931 trio marks the height of Moeran's early achievement; its reliance on the traditional English folk-song modality is spiced with gentle dissonances in its adagio but folk-song again wins out in its insistently rhythmic third and jubilant fourth movements. Maggini String Quartet. Naxos 8.554079 (Hong Kong) 09- 019 $5.98

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864-1949): Schneiderpolka, WoO 1, Serenade in G, WoO 32, Gavotte IV in D, WoO 59, Serenade for 13 Winds, Op. 7, Concert Overture in C Minor, WoO 80, Festmarsch in C, WoO 87. Except for the wind serenade, all these works are receiving their world premiere recordings. Strauss had composed over 140 works by the time he left home at 21 and many were performed by the Wilde Gung'l orchestra which his father had taken over in 1875. Here are a polka, the 6-year-old Strauss' first work, a four-movement serenade in the spirit of Mozart and Schubert (1877), the gavotte of 1879 which got him his first wide critical notice, a large-scale overture in the spirit of Beethoven's Coriolan (1883) and a march in honor of the Wilde Gung'l's 25th anniversary (1888). Volume One in a series of "The Unknown Richard Strauss"! Orchesterverein Wilde Gung'l; Jaroslav Opela. KOCH Schwann 3-1533-2 (Germany) 09- 020 $16.98

JOSEPH MARX (1882-1964): Violin Sonata in A. Along with Franz Schrecker and Korngold, Marx was part of the Viennese musical circle which ignored the experimentation going on via Berg, Webern and Schoenberg and concentrated on producing large-scale works of Romanticism in the tradition of Bruckner, Brahms and Strauss. The hour-long violin sonata, from 1913, is such a work: its huge first movement moves from a dreamy introduction through countless episodes of soaring romanticism and fevered lyricism in an almost bewildering richness of counterpoint and harmonic invention; the earthy scherzo is distinctly Brucknerian in its rustic directness; the third movement is a colossal aria with a Schubertian central section; the finale is a temperamentally passionate and flamboyantly opulent fantasia followed by a magisterial fugue along the Bach-Brahms axis with a boldness of harmony entirely Marx's own. Tobias Ringborg (violin), Daniel Blumenthal (piano). Pavane ADW 7278 (Belgium) 09-021 $10.98

VÍTESLAV NOVÁK (1870-1949): St. Wenceslas Triptych, Prelude on the Love Song from Valasko LEO· JANÁCEK (1854-1928): Overture, Varyto, Chorale Fantasia, 2 Compositions, Postludium from Glagolitic Mass. Novák's triptych is presented here in its original organ version, written by the 71-year-old composer during the German occupation of WWII. Janácek's works are student pieces from 1875 and (the "2 Compositions") self-published pieces from 1884. Unlike the fiery postludium, these works fit firmly into the mid-European romantic organ tradition. Jaroslav TÛma (organ). Supraphon 3318 (Czech Republic) 09-022 $16.98

CAMARGO GUARNIERI (1907-1993): Violin Sonata No. 2, Violin Sonata No. 3, Violin Sonata No. 7, Canção sertaneja. A representative of the generation of Brazilian composers after Villa-Lobos, Guarnieri absorbed Brazilian national characteristics into music in an international idiom. The French influence - he studied in Paris with Koechlin and Boulanger - is also apparent. The music is melodic and passionate by turns, the lyrical slow movements of these sonatas being especially memorable, with the kind of long-breathed melodic lines that remind one of the chamber music of Shostakovich. Guarnieri's finales in particular could only have originated in a hot-blooded equatorial climate, however. Canção sertaneja ("Song of a Backwoodsman") is a nationalistic piece of great charm, sounding rather like high-class Lecuona. Lavard Skou Larsen (violin), Alexander Müllenbach (piano). Marco Polo 8.223885 (Hong Kong) 09-023 $14.98

CAMARGO GUARNIERI (1907-1993): Coletanea, LEOPOLDO MIGUEZ (1850-1902): Violin Sonata, Op. 14, HEITOR VILLA-LOBOS (1887-1959): Sonata fantasia No. 2, MARLOS NOBRE (b. 1939): Desafio No. 3. The oddity here is the half-hour long sonata by the 19th century Brazilian Miguez, written in 1882-4 and showing the influences of Mendelssohn as well as his French contemporaries. The suite of short genre pieces by Guarnieri contains a sultry prelude, a samba, a lullaby and closing cantiga. Villa-Lobos' 1914 sonata contains much vivid and colorful music (but no sonata form!) while Nobre's brief work is a representation of a poetic "duel" between musical antagonists. Martin Foster (violin), Eugene Plawutsky (piano). SNE 593 (Canada) 09-024 $16.98

ERVÍN SCHULHOFF (1894-1942): Sonata Erotica, Hot Sonata, Ten Little Piano Pieces, Symphonia Germanica, etc. Written between 1919 and 1936 these pieces illustrate various aspects of Schulhoff's style but especially his love of the jazz idiom. Several light pieces here were composed under pseudonyms due to their perceived "unclassical" qualities. Many are performed for the first time here by this Dutch jazz ensemble. Ebony Band Amsterdam. Channel Classics 9997 (Netherlands) 09-025 $17.98

CHARLES GOUNOD (1818-1893): String Quartet in C "le petit quatuor", String Quartet No. 2 in A, String Quartet No. 3 in F. Collectors who own a Discover CD recorded in 1991 containing a "String Quartet No. 3 in A Minor" may well wonder what's going on! The latter two of these three works were discovered in December of 1993 when they turned up at an auction of Gounod's manuscripts. The A Minor work and the first work on this recording were published posthumously, the publisher assigning the number "3" to the former. Thus, we have here three world premiere recordings. All Gounod's quartets are late works (after 1881) although none can be dated with any certainty. The C Major work, due to its subtitle, may have been the composer's first attempt : its tormented slow introduction which returns at the end of the work, redolent of Franck, its slow movement, so like a late Beethoven canzonetta, its Mendelssohnian scherzo and tarantella finale bespeak a composer experimenting with pure music after a long career spent writing vocal music. Space prohibits more detailed comment but suffice it to say that the final two quartets are full of delights with more hints of Mendelssohn and Beethoven and perhaps a reference to Fauré in the antique quality of the second quartet's minuetto. The third quartet even comes in five movements, with two scherzos. While the operatic Gounod may be faintly heard here and there, these are definitely not works written by a "slumming" opera composer; they are pure chamber music written by a master at the height of his powers. Quatuor Danel. Auvidis Valois V 4798 (France) 09-026 $18.98

CHARLES-MARIE WIDOR (1844-1937): Symphonie antique, Op. 83 for Soloists, Chorus, Orchestra and Organ, Mass in F Sharp Minor, Op. 36 for Male Choir, Mixed Choir and 2 Organs. Recorded live at the 7th Altenberg Organ Festival in the Altenberg Cathedral, the major work here is the huge Symphonie antique from 1911. Fifty minutes long, its first three movements are for orchestra alone while the fourth (half the work's total length) is a Te Deum in which multiple choirs and organ join steadily building to a majestic conclusion. Andreas Meisner, Paul Wißkirchen (organs), Domkantorei Altenberg, Gürzenich-Chor Köln, Deutsch-Französischer Chor, Köln, Total Vokal, Dortmund, Plsen Radio Symphony Orchestra; Volker Hempfling. Motette CD 40181 (Germany) 09-027 $17.98

FELIX MENDELSSOHN (1809-1847): Piano Concerto No. 1 in G Minor, Op. 25, Piano Concerto No. 2 in D Minor, Op. 40, Capriccio brillant in B Minor, Op. 22, Rondo brillant in E Flat, Op. 29, Serenade and Allegro giocoso in B Minor, Op. 43. Though fairly standard repertoire, we include this because it is Volume 17 of the Hyperion Romantic Piano Concerto series and it is the only available CD with all of Mendelssohn's published works for piano and orchestra. It is also Gramophone's "Editor's Choice" for September. Steven Hough (piano), City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra; Lawrence Foster. Hyperion CDA 66969 (England) 09-028 $17.98

LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827): Triple Concerto in C, Op. 56, Violin Concerto Fragment in C, WoO 5, Piano Concerto in E Flat, WoO 4. The violin concerto fragment - 16 minutes of an allegro con brio - was fully orchestrated by Beethoven but not completed; the piano concerto was "finished" but not orchestrated. A full length work in three movements, it is more likely than not that it is not by Beethoven at all but it is an interesting and enjoyable piece whoever wrote it. This coupling is unique and offers collectors wanting both works a bargain Sima Trio, Jena Philharmonic Orchestra; David Montgomery. Arte Nova 43312 (Germany) 09-029 $8.98

FRIEDRICH KIEL (1821-1885): Cello Sonata in A Minor, Op. 52, 3 Stücke for Cello and Piano, Op. 12, Reisebilder for Cello and Piano, Op. 11. Kiel gets not a mention in The New Grove and, aside from his oratorio Die Stern von Bethlehem, only his two piano quartets are available on CD (thanks to Marco Polo) so this disc is particularly valuable for the light it throws on another talented Romantic composer who achieved greater respect as a pedagogue. His nine op. 11 "Travel Pictures" (1858) are classic Romantic examples of tone painting with such vignettes as "Hunting Scene", "In the Alps", "Storm", "Waterfall" and "Foreign Musicians" treated with colorful vividness. The sonata (1868) is a four-movement work in purest Brahmsian style. Hans Zentgraf (cello), Christoph Ullrich (piano). MD&G 612 0733 (Germany) 09-0 30 $18.98

WOLDEMAR BARGIEL (1828-1897): 3 Fantasiestücke, Op. 9, 2 Bagatelles, Op. 4, Charakterstück Op. 1/2, CLARA SCHUMANN (1819-1896): Pièces fugitives, Op. 15, Nos. 1 and 4, Romanze in A Minor, ROBERT SCHUMANN/CLARA SCHUMANN: Liederkreis, Op. 39, Nos. 5, 6 & 12, Schlummerlied, Op. 124/16, Studie für den Pedalflügel, Op. 56/4, JOHANNES BRAHMS/CLARA SCHUMANN: Menuetto from Serenade, Op. 11, CLARA SCHUMANN/FRANZ LISZT: Ich hab' in deinem Auge, Op. 13/5. Pride of place in this collection entitled "Clara Schumann and her Family" goes to her half brother, Woldemar Bargiel, whose music suggests that of Robert Schumann and Brahms with hints of Mendelssohn. These are premiere recordings, not duplicating any repertoire on the Bargiel/ Marco Polo release. The remainder of the disc contains expert transcriptions of several of Robert's lieder by Clara, a Liszt transcription of a Clara song, a delightful Clara transcription of a movement of Brahms' sunny first serenade and three pieces of Clara's own, rarely heard piano music. Ira Maria Witoszynski (piano). MD&G 604 0729 (Germany) 09-031 $18.98

GAETANO DONIZETTI (1797-1848): Maria di Rohan. This melodramma tragico in three acts was produced in Vienna in 1843. A creative, substantial work, tautly constructed, Maria di Rohan contains some of Donizetti's most expressive music in setting a familiar romantic triangle complete with selfless friendship, betrayal, a duel and a suicide. The soprano's first act aria looks ahead to Verdi's Un ballo in maschera but most of the arias and ensembles exhibit similar eloquence and craftsmanship. 2 CD set. Italian-English libretto. Edita Gruberova (soprano), Octavio Arévalo (tenor), Ettore Kim (baritone), Ulrike Precht (mezzo), Vienna Concert Choir, Vienna Radio Symphony Orchestra; Elio Boncompagni. Nightingale Classics NC 070567 (Switzerland) 09-032 $35.98

ANTON RUBINSTEIN (1829-1894): 2 Mélodies, Op. 3, 2 Morceaux, Op. 30, Barcarolles No. 2, Op. 45bis, No. 3, Op. 50/3bis, No. 4, Fantaisie in E Minor, Op. 77, 3 Caprices, Op. 21, 3 Sérénades, Op. 22, Thème et Variations, Op. 88 . A wonderful surprise from Hyperion's mid-price series: more than 2 and a half hours of Rubinstein piano music in new, unreleased recordings! Only the famous Melodie and the second two barcarolles are available on CD as this release does not double any of the Rubinstein solo piano recordings on Marco Polo. Each disc contains one large-scale work set off by a selection of Rubinstein's vast catalogue of character pieces. Disc One offers the 45-minute long Fantaisie of 1866, dedicated to Thalberg, which opens with a Baroque introduction leading to a massive sonata form movement; a quasi-fugal second movement leads straight into a devilishly tricky scherzo while a slow introduction prefaces the longest movement of the work, a sort of moto perpetuo which receives extensive development before a virtuosic and difficult coda. Disc Two closes with the 42-minute long Theme and Variations of 1881. The theme is followed by twelve variations, each practically a character piece in itself. The theme looks back to Mendelssohn while the different aspects of piano technique investigated by each variation suggest comparison with Schumann's Symphonic Etudes. So now we know what Leslie Howard does for relaxation during his work on the Complete Liszt Edition! 2 CDs for the price of one. Leslie Howard (piano). Hyperion Dyad CDD 22023 (England) 09-033 $17.98

GIOVANNI SGAMBATI (1841-1914): Pezzi lirici, Op. 23, Nocturnes 1-6, "Mélodie de Gluck" from "L'Orfeo". Also contains "Mélodie de Gluck" in historical recordings by Levitzki, Rachmaninov, Hofmann and Petri. This is volume one in a promised Complete Sgambati Edition which will eventually stretch to 11 CDs and will include both symphonies and the piano concerto. Sgambati is credited, along with Martucci, with infusing Germanic Romanticism into Italy, preparing the way for the reflorescence of Italian instrumental music. Although Brahms, Schumann and Mendelssohn are close, this collection of character pieces shows affinities with Liszt also in Sgambati's frequent use of rich chromaticism. In such works as the Nocturne No. 5 or the last piece of Op. 23, a Gigue, a sunlit, Mediterranean personality peeks through as well. The artist also performs two of these pieces on Sgambati's own 1908 Erard. Daniela Morelli (piano). Fonoteca FT-96.11.14 (Italy) 09-034 $16.98

JOAQUIN TURINA (1882-1949): 3 danzas andaluzas, Op. 8, Danzas fantásticas, Op. 22, 2 danzas, Op. 41, 5 danzas gitanas, Op. 55, 5 danzas gitanas, Op. 84. Volume Three of the complete Turina piano works concentrates on the dance. Many of these sets were later orchestrated as they contain much alternately captivating and riveting music yet the color which Soria brings to them here does not leave one missing the orchestra. Antonio Soria (piano). Moraleda 6403 (Spain) 09-035 $16.98

CHARLES TOMLINSON GRIFFES (1884-1920): Three Tone Pictures, Op. 5, Four Roman Sketches, Op. 7, Sonata, Three Preludes, Piece in E Major, Dance in A Minor, De Profundiis, Legend, Piece in D Minor, Piece in B Flat. The shimmering impressionism and fantastic tone-painting of this unique American composer are captured perfectly in this reissue of (most of) a treasured 2-LP set from the beginning of the 1980s. Denver Oldham (piano). New World 80310 (U.S.A.) 09-036 $16.98

MANUEL BLANCAFORT (1897-1987): Quartet de Pedralbes, Quartet in C. Masterfully put together and using local color, these two quartets, from 1950 and 1948 respectively, represent the mature voice of this Catalan composer who counted himself a colleague of Mompou and who, like that composer, was much influenced by French examples such as Les Six. Quartet Pedralbes. Moraleda 6461 (Spain) 09-037 $16.98

ALFREDO PIATTI (1822-1901): 12 Caprices for Solo Cello, Op. 25, Caprice on a Theme from "Niobe" of Pacini, Op. 22. Piatti was a superstar of the cello, who worked regularly with such luminaries as Berlioz, Vieuxtemps, Moscheles, Paderewski, Clara Schumann and Joachim. These Caprices are technically demanding, but avoid the trap of superficial showiness, while taking the cello to extremes of expressiveness and technical accomplishment never before encountered in the literature for the instrument. Raphaël Chrétien (cello). Dapheneo 9704 (France) 09-038 $16.98

ANDRES GAOS (1874-1959): Symphony No. 2 "En las montañas de Galicia", Fantasy for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 24, Impresión nocturna, Suite a la antigua. Gaos lived in Paris for many years and was known as a violinist; after 1940 he lived in Argentina. These are attractive works in a late nineteenth century style that may remind some of Dvorak or Grieg. The symphony is actually a tripartite tone-poem, warmly expressive and pastoral in mood. The Fantasia is also predominantly melodic, the soloist's virtuosity throughout in the service of the musical material, never the other way around. And the Impresión Nocturna is quite simply a beautiful serenade for strings, worthy to keep company with the Elgar (which it resembles). Ondrej Lewit (violin), Orquesta Sinfónica de Galicia; Victor Pablo Pérez. Arte Nova 27778 (Germany) 09-039 $8.98

ANTON ARENSKY (1861-1906): Egyptian Nights, Op. 50. Arensky's ballet to a text byPushkin was written in 1900 and staged by Fokine in 1908. Comprising an overture and 13 scenes, the work contains apparently authentic Egyptian melodies which Arensky collected from various early 19th century French and English sources although his harmonic language and orchestration often conceal their origin. There are a sinuous "Dance of Berenice" and dances of Jewish and Egyptian girls as well as a warriors' dance which sound more exotic. In all, however, this is typical, well-scored, enjoyable European Romantic ballet music (which explains the presence of a waltz!). Moscow Symphony Orchestra; Dmitry Yablonsky. Marco Polo (Hong Kong) 8.225028 09-040 $14.98

LUDOLF NIELSEN (1876-1939): Symphony No. 2 in E, Op. 19, Concert Overture in C, Op. 13, Romance for Violin and Orchestra, Op. 20. Ludolf Nielsen, unlike his Danish namesake Carl, embraced traditional romanticism and his second symphony, receiving its second recording in a little more than a year is an opulently scored, large-scale work with a strong sense of fantasy. The two companion pieces receive their first recordings; from 1906 and 1908 respectively, the overture and romance just predate the symphony and are in the fine tradition of Nordic romanticism which started with Grieg and continued with Svendsen, Sinding and Halvorsen. Anton Kontra (violin), South Jutland Symphony Orchestra; Frank Cramer. Marco Polo/Da Capo 8.224047 (Denmark) 09-041 $14.98

ALBERTO WILLIAMS (1862-1952): Symphony No. 7, Op. 103, Poema del Iguazú, Op. 115. Although he has long remained in the shadow of Alberto Ginastera, Alberto Williams is generally regarded as the father of Argentinian classical music, having authored an enormous amount of music, including songs, piano pieces, symphonic poems and suites and nine symphonies. Although he initially followed the German model of romantic music and later came under the influence of Cesar Franck, he ultimately came to embrace certain nationalist tendencies before the end of the 19th century. His seventh symphony is subtitled Eterno Reposo (Eternal Repose) and received its premiere in 1937. 09-042 $8.98

CARL STAMITZ (1745-1801): Clarinet Concertos No. 7 and 10 in B Flat, No. 11 in E Flat, Concerto for 2 Clarinets in B Flat, Concerto for Basset Horn in B Flat, Concerto in B Flat for Clarinet and Bassoon, STAMITZ/JOHANN JOSEPH BEER (1774-1811): Clarinet Concerto No. 6 in E Flat. 2 CDs Karl Schechta (clarinet, basset horn), Jürgen Demmler (clarinet), Jürgen Gode (bassoon), Kurpfälziches Chamber Orchestra; Jiri Malát. Arte Nova 30477 (Germany) 09-043 $17.98

FRANZ JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809): Divertimenti Nos. 1-12, Hob III:1-12. The first complete recording of Hob. III (or Opp. 1 and 2): string quartets in origin, here performed by small string ensemble. 4 CDs. Hamburg Soloists; Emil Klein. Arte Nova 31682 (Germany) 09-044 $35.98

FRANZ BERWALD (1796-1868): Septet in B Flat, Serenade for Tenor, Clarinet, Horn, Cello, Double Bass and Piano, Quartet for Clarinet, Horn, Bassoon and Piano in E Flat. Berwald's classically-modelled works often have great charm, and while breaking no new ground they are lovingly crafted and delightful to listen to. So it is with the three works on this disc in which the spirit of Spohr and Beethoven are present. The Serenade, a first recording, comes over as a kind of encapsulated operatic episode, and is most effective, while the more well-known instrumental works readily stand comparison with the music of the composers mentioned above. Arion Wind Quintet, Schein String Quartet, Mikael Björk (double bass), Joakim Kallhed (piano), Thomas Annmo (tenor). Naxos 8.553714 (Hong Kong) 09- 045 $5.98

SIGFRID KARG-ELERT (1877-1933): Sonatine in A Minor, Op. 74, Symphonic Canzona in C Minor, Op. 85/2, Music for Organ, Op. 145, Chorale Improvisations, Op. 65 (excerpts). After a delay of several years, the complete Karg-Elert series of organ works continues with this specially-priced release. 2 CDs for the price of 1. Wolfgang Stockmeier (organs). CPO 999 435 (Germany) 09-046 $15.98

FRANZ JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809): Divertimenti Nos. 1-12, Hob III:1-12. The first complete recording of Hob. III or Opp. 1 and 2 - string quartets in origin, here performed by small string ensemble. 4 CDs. Hamburg Soloists; Emil Klein. Arte Nova 31682 (Germany) 09-047 $35.98

FRANZ ANTON DIMMLER (1753-1827): Clarinet Concerto in B Flat, FRANZ TAUSCH (1762-1817): Clarinet Concerto in E Flat, FRÉDÉRIC BLASIUS (1758-1829): Clarinet Concerto No. 1, JOHANN SEBASTIAN DEMAR (1763-1832): Clarinet Concerto in E Flat, JOSEPH FIALA (1748-1816): Concerto in B Flat for Clarinet and English Horn, PETER WINTER (1754-1825): Sinfonia concertante in B Flat for Violin, Clarinet, Horn and Bassoon, FRANZ DANZI (1763-1826): Concerto in B Flat for Clarinet and Bassoon, Sinfonia concertante in B Flat, Op. 47 for Clarinet and Flute, GEORG FRIEDRICH FUCHS (1752-1821): Sinfonia concertante in E Flat for Clarinet and Horn. A cornucopia of wind concerto riches from composers associated with the Mannheim school; 8 of the 16 concertos recorded here are world premiere recordings. NOTE: The first two CDs in this box duplicate the Carl Stamitz 2 CD set listed above on this page. These concertos are not repeated in the above listing. 5 CDs. Karl Schlechta (clarinet), Helmut Koch (english horn), Jürgen Gode (bassoon), Xiao-Ming Han (horn), Wolfgang Schwarzmüller (violin), Gunhild Ott (flute), Kurpfälzisches Chamber Orchestra; Jiri Malát. Arte Nova 37327 (Germany) 09-048 $44.98

JOHANN SIMON MAYR (1763-1845): Overtures to Sisara, Un pazzo ne fa cento, Il segreto, I virtuosi a teatro, Ginevra di Scozia, Alonso e Cora, Adelasia e Aleramo, La rosa bianca e la rosa rossa, Medea in Corinto. Mayr was a central figure in the generation of Italian opera composers before Rossini, writing 79 operas and oratorios between 1791 and 1824. These are delightful works in the finest early Romantic tradition. Mayr has a bottomless well of melody to draw from and he delights in giving wind instruments ample solo opportunities (Il segreto is practically a bassoon concerto-movement). In addition, it's surprising to note that Mayr was employing the "Rossini crescendo" to dramatic effect before Rossini was out of childhood! Orchestra Stabile di Bergamo; Donato Renzetti. Fonit Cetra NFCD 2030 (Italy) 09-049 $16.98

GIOACHINO ROSSINI (1792-1868): Adelaide di Borgogna. Speaking of Rossini, here is a recording of a rare early work from 1817, a dramma in two acts set in 10th century Italy. Coming between Armida and Mosè in Egitto, the work has a sobriety of utterance which suggests such future operas as Maometto II and Semiramide. 2 CDs. Italian libretto. Mariella Devia (soprano), Martine Dupuy (contralto), Aldo Bertolo (tenor), New Cambridge Chorus, Martina Franca Festival Orchestra; Alberto Zedda. Fonit Cetra CDC 64 (Italy) 09-050 $33.98

LEOPOLD HOFMANN (1738-1793): Sinfonias in B Flat, F, D, F and C. The latest arrival in Naxos's series of "The 18th Century Symphony", this set brings to the catalogue for the first time five symphonies by a contemporary of Haydn who was of considerable influence and importance in his day. In three or four movements, these symphonies represent the galant style filtered through the Mannheim School, not unlike early Haydn. Northern Chamber Orchestra; Nicholas Ward. Naxos 8.553866 (Hong Kong) 09-051 $5.98

CARL STAMITZ (1745-1801): Clarinet Concerto in F, Concerto for 2 Clarinets in B Flat, Concerto for Clarinet and Bassoon in B Flat. "The 18th Century Concerto" series continues with Volume 1 of the complete works involving concerted clarinet by this Bohemian master. Each of his concertos follows the same pattern: sonata form first movement, song-like slow movement and a toe-tapping, rhythmically infectious rondo. Tomoko Takashima (clarinet), Koji Okazaki (bassoon), Nicolaus Esterházy Sinfonia; Kálmán Berkes (clarinet). Naxos 8.553584 (Hong Kong) 09-052 $5.98

FRANZ ANTON HOFFMEISTER (1754-1812): Grande sinfonie "La Chasse", Op. 14, ANTONIO ROSETTI (c.1750-1792): Symphony in D "La Chasse", FRANZ JOSEPH HAYDN (1732-1809): Symphony No. 73 "La Chasse", MARC ANTOINE DE DAMPIERRE (1676-1756): Fanfare La retraite prise, ANON. 18th CEN.: Fanfare Le départ pour la chasse. The three hunt-themed symphonies are enclosed by two historical hunting fanfares performed by the horn section of the orchestra. The Haydn is familiar but the Hoffmeister and the Rosetti receive their first CD performances, the Hoffmeister like the Haydn having a pungent, horn punctuated "hunting finale". Strangely enough, given his wonderful horn concertos, Rosetti's work only hints at horn motifs and spreads them around the orchestra although the slow movement is notable for its muted-horn technique. Valuable additions to the repertoire of the Classical symphony. Vienna Volksoper Chamber Orchestra; Christoph Campestrini. Orfeo 466 971 (Germany) 09-053 $18.98

PIERRE-ALEXANDRE MONSIGNY (1729-1817): Overtures to On ne s'avise jamais de tout, Le cadi dupé, Le faucon, L'isle sonante, Félix ou l'enfant trouvé, Le deserteur. Called by Grétry "the most tuneful of all musicians", Monsigny's theatre works show an attractive freshness of inspiration. Mostly self-taught, his technique was sometimes imperfect but his instrumental writing rivals that of Méhul and Philidor and he is seen as a founder of French comic opera and, thus, a precursor of Boieldieu, Auber, Bizet and Massenet. Ensemble Orchestral de la Côte d'Opale; Marc Lajouanique. Towo Records MO 195 (France) 09-054 $14.98

JOÃO DE SOUSA CARVALHO (1745-1798): Allegro in D, Toccata in G Minor, SEBASTIAN DE ALBERO (1722-1756): Sonatas in G and G Minor, JOÃO CORDEIRO DA SILVA (18th cen.): Allegro in C, CARLOS SEIXAS (1704-1742): Sonatas in A Minor, D and C Minor, PADRE JOSÉ LARRAÑAGA (ca. 1730-1806): Sonata de quinto tono, ALBERTO JOSÉ GOMES DA SILVA (?-1795): Sonata in E Minor, FRANCISCO XAVIER BAPTISTA (?-1797): Sonata in G Minor, PADRE ANTONIO SOLER (1729-1784): Sonata in G, R. 45, Sonata in C Minor, R. 100, Sonata in C, R. 51. This wholly delightful disc will be welcomed by anyone who enjoys the sparkling keyboard writing of Domenico Scarlatti, and wonders what lesser-known names languish in his enormous shadow. These native Iberian composers have incorporated the harmonic and rhythmic styles of Spanish and Portuguese folk music into their keyboard writing. Susanne Skyrm (fortepiano). Music & Arts CD 985 (U.S.A.) 09-055 $16.98

GIOVANNI GIORNOVICHI (?1740-1804): Violin Concertos Nos. 1, 4 and 5. Paul Yeager, Angela Satris, Brittany Kotheimer (violins), Starling Chamber Orchestra; Kurt Sassmannshaus. Arte Nova 30469 (Germany) 09-056 $8.98 GIOVANNI GIORNOVICHI (?1740-1804): Violin Concertos Nos. 3, 8 and 9. Paul Yeager, Tania Davison (violins), Starling Chamber Orchestra; Kurt Sassmannshaus. Arte Nova 34019 (Germany) 09-057 $8.98 Of uncertain ancestry, Giornovichi was Italian by training and was the most popular violinist in Paris before Viotti. His 16 concertos represent the late galant style and are all in the major, simple in texture and harmony and charming in expression. He introduced the romance as a slow movement, in keeping with his general predilection for elegance, sentiment and order.

CRISTÓBAL HALFFTER (b.1930): Violin Concerto No. 1, Mural sonante. Following his involvement in the group "Nueva Música" in the 1950s, Cristóbal Halffter has felt himself "deeply united with painters, sculptors and other creators", and nowhere in his output is this more clearly manifested than Mural sonante. Sculptural blocks of sound and expressionistic use of timbral color make this a vivid listening experience, full of violent juxtapositions creating a powerful inner tension. The first violin concerto presents the full range of technical and emotive capabilities of the solo instrument against a jagged landscape of orchestral sonorities in a concertante struggle for expressive superiority. The soloist is the dedicatee, whose playing inspired the challenging solo writing. Christiane Edinger (violin), Frankfurt Radio Symphony; Cristóbal Halffter. Auvidis Montaigne (France) 782109 09-058 $18.98

LOUIS ANDRIESSEN (b. 1939): Zilver, Disco, Overture to Orpheus, Worker's Union. Andriessen's highly individual style, a kind of slow-motion minimalism expressed through the tectonic interaction of large-scale structures delineated in striking tonalities is nowhere shown to greater advantage than in Zilver, a quarter of an hour of cumulative elaboration around a simple cell or motif. Disco again uses unorthodox combinations of sonorities, alternating fast unison music (sounding a little like Michael Nyman, but more monolithic) with static exposition of piano overtones and sustained monotones. Overture to Orpheus is a harpsichord solo, again exploring the long-term transmutation of elemental material, and Worker's Union uses an analogous process using rhythmic cells with little pitch information specified, the whole ensemble becoming a vast percussion instrument, producing a mechanistically driven result of great visceral impact. The California Ear Unit. New Albion NA 094 (U.S.A.) 09-059 $16.98

CHARLES CAMILLERI (b. 1931): Concerto for Organ, Strings and Percussion, L'evolution de la joie, Concertino for Clarinet and Strings, Missa Mundi. This disc presents four large-scale works displaying the range of Camilleri's compositional abilities. The concerto is full of bold, bright effects, alternating with meditative stillness; a spiritual journey presented in wide-screen Technicolor. L'Evolution de la joie uses the organ to provide a landscape against which the solo protagonist progresses towards ecstasy, while the Missa Mundi, an extended work for solo organ, illustrates the concept of Teilhard de Chardin's "The Mass of the World" in a journey from the formlessness of the void to full spiritual enlightenment, expressed through increasing diatonicism distilled from the chromatic chaos of the earlier movements. By contrast, the clarinet concertino is a classical little divertimento with no extramusical associations, light and entertaining. Kevin Bowyer (organ), Peter Turnbull (trumpet), David Campbell (clarinet), Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra; Julian Clayton. ASV DCA 1011 (England) 09-060 $16.98

TERESA PROCACCINI (b. 1934): Tre Danze for 2 Trumpets and Strings, Concerto for Harp and Orchestra, Musica Barbara for Piano and Chamber Orchestra, Musica per archi, Concertino for Flute and Strings. Angular, uncompromising and expertly crafted, the music of Teresa Procaccini is firmly rooted in the European tradition and owes something to the Neoclassical movement, but provides a welcome contrast to the bloodlessness of much of the output of followers of that trend. The three dances are reminiscent of the Stravinsky of Symphony in 3 Movements, and provide an invigorating listening experience. The harp concerto is a serious, sombre work, in which the soloist is called upon to provide a complex and gripping musical argument, worlds away from the pretty arpeggiated decorativeness of much harp music. Musica Barbara recalls Bartók, spiky and energetic, while the "music for strings" is a study in concentartion, achieved through great economy of means. Like the other concertante work, the flute concertino requires the soloist to provide much musical substance, rather than mere superficial display - in fact it is this virtuosity of ideas, not of instrumental technique for its own sake, that makes Procaccini's work so enduringly satisfying. Susana Klinchova (harp), Viktor Chuchkov (piano), Simeon Shterev (flute), Bulgarian Radio and TV Orchestra; Kamen Goleminov. Edipan 3005 (Italy) 09- 061 $16.98

TERESA PROCACCINI (b. 1934): Un cavallino avventuroso for Small Orchestra, La peste di atene for Chorus and Orchestra, Sensazioni sonore for Orchestra, Divagazioni for Strings, Dannazione e preghiera for Mezzo-soprano and Strings. This selection of works demonstrates Procaccini's skill in writing for diverse ensembles, whether the small modern orchesta with expanded percussion battery of Un Cavallino avventuroso (1960) or the solo voice and string orchestra of the dramatic cantata Dannazione e preghiera. La peste di Atene illustrates a text derived by Procaccini from the Roman poet Lucretius' description of the plague at Athens, drawing music of great dramatic tension from the composer. Sensazioni Sonore (1969) frames a poetic, cantabile slow movement and an incisive and vivacious scherzo with an allegro con brio first movement and an animatedpresto finale, all in the space of a quarter of an hour. Divagazioni is the dance suite Bartók never wrote, a vital and vigorous contrapuntal discourse for strings, while in Dannazione, the strings accompany verses of Ungaretti in a powerful and moving statement. Chorus and Orchestra of the Timisoara Philharmonic; Remus Georgescu, Boriana Tabakova (mezzo), Bulgarian Radio and TV Orchestra; Kamen Goleminov. Edipan 3022 (Italy) 09-062 $16.98

FRANZ HUMMEL (b. 1939): An den schönen blauen Donau: Opera, Portrait Liana Issakadze: Ballad for Violin and Chamber Orchestra. After a successful career as a pianist, specialising in twentieth-century repertoire, Hummel decided to devote himself exclusively to composition in 1975. An der Schönen blauen Donau - the title is deliberately ironic - tells the story of an idealistic woman destroyed by political naiveté and the powerlessness of the individual in the face of the intrigues of the state. For the most part the music is post-Bergian, with a little - not much - of Darmstadt about it. Soloists, Liana Issakadze (violin), Georgian Chamber Orchestra; Alexei Kornienko. Arte Nova 38023 (Germany) 09-063 $8.98

RICHARD TSANG (b.1952): Prelude, LAW WING-FAI (b.1949): Sphere Supreme, JOSHUA CHAN (b.1962): Devotions of Morning Fragrance, DANIEL LAW (b.1946): Symphony No. 2, CHANG WING-WAH (b.1954): Transit. The works presented on this disc demonstrate the diverse strengths of a group of young Hong Kong composers all of whom have studied in the West and absorbed whatever they wanted from contemporary Western compositional techniques. To varying degrees the shorter pieces here are abstract and expressionistic, using dissonance and vivid orchestration, with much creative use of tuned and untuned percussion to provide colour and texture in vigorous and vital music of great character. Daniel Law's Symphony No. 2 is tonal, but with an exoticism conveyed through dissonance and some harmonic scales not traditional in Western music. It frames a mystical slow movement between two fast and vigorous ones, packed with ideas and motifs. Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Mak Ka-lok. Hugo HRP 799 (Hong Kong) 09-0 64 $19.98

YOUNG SHUI-TING (b.1931): Walk for Flute, Oboe and Bass Clarinet, HUI CHEUNG-WAI (b.1963): Homeland for String Quartet, VICTOR CHAN (b.1959): Memories for Piano and Clarinet Quintet, LO HAU-MAN (b.1965): Deesse Fantastique for Flute, Oboe, Clarinet, String Quartet and Percussion, CLARENCE MAK (b.1959): Plain Autumn for Flute, Clarinet, Cello and Piano, DOMING LAM (b.1926): Breakthrough for Flute and Cello, POLY NG (b.1969): Desert Places for Soprano, Tenor, Violin, Piano and Percussion. Unlike the music on Hugo's companion CD of orchestral music, most of these chamber works make explicit use of Chinese modes and instrumental techniques derived from traditional Chinese music. Western compositional methods, including twelve-note techniques, are also employed - for example, in Chan's Memories, an emotionally charged work in memory of a deceased family member - but are always subservient to the expressive content of the music. Lo Hau-man's Deesse Fantastique makes the most obvious references to Chinese folk music, while Poly Ng's Desert Places, a setting of a poem by Robert Frost, owes the greatest allegience to contemporary Western idioms. Plain Autumn by Clarence Mak plumbs the greatest emotional depths here, a heartbroken in memoriam for the victim of a personal tragedy. Various artists. Hugo HRP 798 (Hong Kong) 09-0 65 $19.98

CHAN WING-WAH (b.1954): Symphony No. 4 "Te Deum", ANTON BRUCKNER (1824-1896): Requiem. If we were to invent an Austrian-sounding composer, and tried to pass Chan Wing-Wah's Te Deum off as being a late 19th century work of his, we would have no trouble in carrying off our deception. But this is not a pastiche; it is that good a piece of music. Coming to this tradition from a wholly different æsthetic, the composer has clearly identified completely with it without a hint of the tongue in cheek sense of historical incongruity, or of deliberately reactionary conservatism that would almost inevitably attend a 38-year-old western composer writing such as this in 1992. The coupling, appropriately enough, is Bruckner's early, classically modelled and traditional yet characteristic and moving Requiem, which has never been performed or recorded as much as it deserves. Vocal soloists, Hong Kong Oratorio Society, Hong Kong Sinfonietta; Chan Wing-wah. Hugo HRP 7135 (Hong Kong) 09-066 $19.98

CHAN WING-WAH (b.1954): Symphony No. 1, Symphony No. 3, Morning Sun. Chan's first symphony, from 1979 is greatly influenced by Shostakovich, the third, from 1985 uses a double orchestra and is inspired by the ancient Chinese four-tone scale in blending Chinese aesthetics with western compositional techniques. Morning Sun, from 1990, is a tone poem which uses a progression from dissonance to consonance to suggest a journey from darkness to light. Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Wing-Sie Yip. Hugo HRP 795 (Hong Kong) 09-067 $19.98

CHAN PUI-FANG (b.1921): Wavy Emotions, Symphony No. 2 "Tsing-ming's Memorial", Symphony No. 1 "My Motherland". Chan studied both in China and in Russia and makes use of the western orchestral techniques deemed suitable by the Soviets in his compositions which generally glorify his native land in music of richness and heartfelt emotion sprinkled with the modes of traditional Chinese music. The first symphony was written between 1960 and 1964 and falls into three movements: a prelude describes the wintry climes of northern China while the second movement seems to pay tribute to Red Army soldiers for exploits not made clear while the final movement is described as an orchestral ballade which looks both back and forward to a heroic and prosperous future. The second symphony, from 1980, is a much briefer memorial to martyrs of the Cultural Revolution while the tone poem, from 1960, is in the same descriptive vein as the first symphony. Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Mak Ka-lok. Hugo HRP 7108 (Hong Kong) 09-068 $19.98

DING SHAN-DE (b.1911): Long March Symphony. As can be seen from his birth-date, Ding's life has been full of turmoil and, more or less, constantly in flux. It is not surprising that his magnum opus is this massive, five-movement symphony of Mahlerian proportions based on the legendary retreat of the Red Army in order to regroup and battle both the Japanese invaders and the Kuomintang armies for control of China. Three years in the writing, it is basically an epic piece of musical propaganda glorifying Chairman Mao and vilifying the Nationalist Chinese in outsize music of bold colors, shot through with folk elements in the finest tradition of "Socialist Realism". A valuable piece of 20th century musical history. Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Mak Ka-lok. Hugo HRP 7105 (Hong Kong) 09-069 $19.98

LAW WING-FAI: Pipa Concerto, Phantasm for Cello and Orchestra, Musica Concertata for Orchestra. The pipa concerto effectively sets the instrument's traditional Chinese sound world against a small western orchestra in a full-size concerto of great attractiveness. Phantasm is sensuous and lyrical, using the cello to dramatic effect while Musica concertata effectively opposes families of orchestral instruments in a non-traditional manner. Wong Ching (pipa), Wendy Law (cello), Russian Philharmonic Orchestra; Tsung Yeh. Hugo HRP 7104 (Hong Kong) 09-070 $19.98

DING SHAN-DE (b.1911): 6 Preludes, Sonatina, 8 Piano Pieces for Children, Scherzo, Rondo, 16 Studies, 4 Little Preludes and Fugues, Concerto in B Flat for 2 Pianos. In addition to such epic pieces as the Long March Symphony, Ding has written much music for young people, into which category the works here fall, and they are performed by a number of young pianists (the youngest of whom was 10 when this recording was made!) The music is lively and approachable, with open, clear textures, western in style with intermittent scalar or intervallic clues as to the ethnic origin of the composer. Zhang Wei-cong, Zhang Ying, Sun Mei-ting, Yao Gang (pianos). Hugo HRP 736 (Hong Kong) 09-071 $19.98

YE XIAOGANG: The Last Paradise for Violin and Orchestra, The Silence of the Sakyamuni for Shakuhachi and Orchestra, Horizon for Soprano, Baritone and Orchestra, Winter. This is music by an angry young man - one with remarkable technique and the ability to put his message across with devastating clarity. There is very little that sounds oriental in this U. S.-educated composer's music, apart from the wistful, mysterious sound of the shakuhachi in and an occasional pentatonic gesture. For the most part the music is freely atonal with tonal referents, expressionistic and highly dramatic. Anton Miller (violin), Kifu Mitzuhashi (shakuhachi), Wang Xiufen (soprano), Yuan Chenye (baritone), Central Philharmonic Orchestra of China; Hu Yongyan, Zheng Xiaoying. Hugo HRP 792 (Hong Kong) 09-072 $19.98

MIKIS THEODORAKIS (b. 1925): Symphony No. 7: Spring Symphony. A kind of New Age le Sacre, dealing with themes of rebirth and liberation through violence and suffering in which Shostakovich's spirit is near. Sometimes the music begins to sound like Hovhaness, because of the modal influence derived from Theodorakis' immersion in Greek vocal tradition, but the composer's inspiration is original, and the work powerful and compelling. Kari Lövaas (soprano), Violetta Madjarova (mezzo), Sergei Larinas (tenor), Günther Emmerich (bass), Prague Radio Choir, Lithuanian State Philharmonic Choir, Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra; Herbert Kegel. Intuition 3131 (Germany) 09-073 $16.98

PETER SCULTHORPE (b.1929): Port Essington, Sonatas for Strings Nos. 1-3, Lament for Strings, Irkanda IV for Violin, Strings and Percussion. These works for string ensemble all have about them a quintessentially Australian air of wide open spaces, and of a landscape of beauty but with a brooding hostility lurking in the background. This is most explicit in Port Essington, derived from the composer's music for a television film about an unsuccessful colony in early 19th century Australia. Pitting salon-style music for three strings against Sculthorpe's typical acerbic harmonic language (illuminated by imitations of natural sounds, representing the intractable forces of nature) in the full orchestra, the piece has a harrowing intensity and an almost graphic quality. The other works have no overt programmatic element, but all share an epic quality derived, no doubt, from this remarkable composer's acute awareness of his country's strange and primitive history. Australian Chamber Orchestra; Richard Tognetti. ABC Classics 8.770042 (Australia) 09-074 $14.98

J.S. BACH (1685-1750)/ARNOLD SCHOENBERG (1874-1951): Chorale Prelude BWV 631 "Komm, Gott, Schöpfer, heiliger Geist", Chorale Prelude BWV 654 "Schmücke dich, O liebe Seele", Prelude and Fugue in E Flat, BWV 552, JOHANNES BRAHMS (1833-1897)/SCHOENBERG: Piano Quartet in G Minor, Op. 25. It is easy to forget that the Schoenberg had profound respect for tonal music of all periods. His orchestrations of music by other composers were an important way for him to keep in touch with tradition, especially that of German music, which he so admired. Hence these orchestral versions of organ music by Bach - quite unlike those of Stokowski, the consummate showman; here Schoenberg deals with his classical models with the utmost restraint, illuminating details in the originals through clarity of orchestration. The Brahms orchestration is Schoenberg's homage to a work he loved and whose material he wanted to liberate from the constraints of chamber performance. Sydney Symphony Orchestra; Edo de Waart. ABC Classics 8.770032 (Australia) 09-075 $14.98

MAX REGER (1873-1916)/ARNOLD SCHOENBERG (1874-1951): Eine Romantische Suite, Op. 125, JOHANN STRAUSS (1804-1849)/SCHOENBERG: Kaiserwaltzer, Op. 437, Rosen aus dem Süden, Op. 388, FRANZ SCHUBERT (1797-1828)/SCHOENBERG: Ständchen, D 889. In all these idiosyncratic arrangements Schoenberg intentionally employed the resources of the standard salon "orchestra" of the time, for the joint purpose of convenience and to demonstrate that such an ensemble could, in the right hands, be liberated from the vulgarity usually associated with it. The Reger suite, an orchestrally opulent three-movement tone poem suggested by Böcklin's paintings, is lucidly presented in Schoenberg's masterly instrumentation. Markus Schäfer (tenor), Les Solistes de l'Opéra National de Lyon. Erato 0630-13541-2 (France) 09-076 $16.98

WAYNE SIEGEL (b.1953): Devil's Golf Course for Orchestra, Synthesizers and Drums, Jackdaw for Bass Clarinet and Computer, Eclipse for 4 Voices and Electronics, Tracking for String Quartet and Computer. The "Devil's Golf Course" is an expanse of salt flats in California's Death Valley, and Siegel has depicted this unearthly landscape, one of the hottest and least hospitable places on earth, in music whose minimalist structures and processes reflect the harsh, impersonal yet awe-inspiring terrain of this area. The addition of a synthesizer to the already large symphony orchestra enhances the impression of an alien sound-world. The other works, which use synthesized and sampled sounds in conjunction with live instruments or voices, combine the ingenuity of the avant-garde with the immediate accessibility of popular music without sounding like either. Aarhus Symphony Orchestra; Gregory Rose, Harry Sparnaay (bass clarinet), Singcircle, The Smith Quartet. Dacapo 8.224069 (Denmark) 09-077 $14.98

MARCELLO PANNI (b. 1940): Recondite Armonie, Tre Danze, Veni Creator Nos. 1-3, Petit Septuor, Canzonette a 3 Voci, Seiner Edlen Freundin, Tre Haiku. A student of Petrassi, Panni has experimented in many techniques of modern composition; aleatorics, graphic notation, the unexpected juxtapositions dear to the surrealists, and more besides. This has given rise to an astonishing range of styles within his output. The three (of a total of six) Veni, Creator pieces presented here all offer different "takes" on the liturgical plainchant, commented on in diverse ways by the various solo instruments. The effect is improvisatory, unrehearsed, spontaneous. But the Tre danze are fully composed pieces for a conventional ensemble, incorporating a warped tango, a ragtime two-step and a slow, meditative piece in memory of Morton Feldman. Recondite Armonie feels like a nonchalant improvisation or accompanied cadenza, for harp and percussion. The vocal works, in which the writing for the voice may recall Berio, illustrate their texts with almost graphic clarity. Various artists. Edipan 3013 (Italy) 09-078 $16.98

KARLHEINZ STOCKHAUSEN (b. 1928): Tierkreis for Clarinet and Piano, ANDRÉ BOUCOURECHLIEV (b. 1925): Nocturnes, DONALD STEVEN (b. 1945): Sapphire Song, BRUCE W. PENNYCOOK: PRAESCIO IV. Tierkreis is one of the major landmarks of contemporary clarinet music; the other works are far less familiar. Sapphire Song pays homage to the shakuhachi flute in a coruscating quasi-improvisational style, while Boucourechliev's Nocturnes whisper their way through a gentle meditation. PRAESCIO IV by Bruce Pennycook will interest those enthused by electroacoustic techniques. The clarinet soloist triggers via MIDI a real-time interactive computer program, playing synthesized and sampled sounds as a far more responsive partner to the live component of the composition than a tape part could ever be, and the result is sonically fascinating and musically exhilarating. Jean-Guy Boisvert (clarinet), Louise-Andrée Baril (piano). SNE 586 (Canada) 09 -079 $16.98

JEAN COULTHARD (b. 1908): Shelley Portrait, Gardens, JOHN BAVICCHI (b. 1922): Clarinet Quintet, Op. 109. Jean Coulthard is one of Canada's leading composers. She writes in an extremely approachable style, both in Gardens - three short descriptive pieces forming a fast-slow-fast suite, and the more advanced Shelley Portrait, setting texts of Percy Bysshe Shelley and Thomas Hardy, for soprano and small chamber ensemble. The Boston-based composer Bavicchi's clarinet quintet is more acerbic, using a vocabulary that would have been familiar to Shostakovich. Sherman Freidland (clarinet), Beverely McGuire (soprano), Dale Bartlett (piano), et al. SNE 614 (Canada) 09-080 $16.98

ROGER CALMEL (b. 1921): Les Yeux de Lumière, Stabat Mater, Les Trois Messes Basses, Churs, Mélodies. The three principal works on this disc are the Stabat Mater, a setting of the liturgical text composed in several versions in the 1970s, Les Trois Messes Basses, after a story by Alphonse Daudet, and Les Yeux de Lumière, setting a poem by Alain Suied. Calmel's mastery of choral polyphony is evident throughout, as are the exceptional clarity and lucidity of texture, enhanced by the spare, striking instrumentation characteristic of his music. The musical vocabulary is broadly polytonal with strong adherence to tonal centres, creating a strong impression of harmonic thinking with all that implies in terms of emotional direction and content. Le Madrigal de Paris; Pierre Calmelet. Chamade 5648 (France) 09-081 $16.98

MARCEL GODARD: La Vierge à l'enfant. Profound and intimate, this oratorio, which the composer refers to, not inappropriately, in the context of the cantatas of J. S .Bach, marks the culmination of a choral triptych dedicated to the Virgin Mary. The music is beautiful and very moving; conventional, yes, or better, traditional - no avant-garde histrionics or minimalist navel-gazing here - just exquisite craftsmanship and utter sincerity. Fine performance, and the soprano soloist, Anne Quentin, is quite excellent. Anne Quentin (soprano), Franck Pénitzka (tenor), Chorale de la Maison des Etudiants Catholiques de Lyon, Ensemble Vocal du département de Musicologie de l'Université Lumière Lyon 2, Ensemble Vocale .Phonandre, Capella Lugdunensis; Laurent Grégoire Studio SM 2597 (France) 09-082 $18.98

ANDRÉ SERRE: Mémoire d'anges, GILBERT AMY (b. 1936): Symphonies pour cuivres, MICHAËL LEVINAS: Clov et Hamm, MARCEL LANDOWSKI (b. 1915): Blanc et feu, PASCAL DUSAPIN (b. 1955): Stanze, XAVIER DARASSE (b. 1934): Antagonisme IV, COSTIN MIEREANU (b. 1943): Musiques élémentaires pour la messe. Contemporary works for brass quintet, supplemented by percussion and taped sounds in the case of the Miereanu, Levinas and Serre works. Timbre and space are all-important here; the works run the gamut of the continuum of 20th century music history that began with the Second Viennese School, but the special characteristics of the brass ensemble unify this music and enhance its sonic appeal. Ensemble Odyssée. Chamade 5642 (France) 09-083 $16.98

ADAM KHUDOYAN (b. 1921): Sonatas for Cello Solo Nos. 1-3, Sonata for 2 Cellos, Nostalgia for 2 Cellos, GEORGE CRUMB (b. 1929): Sonata for Solo Cello, PAUL HINDEMITH (1895-1963): Sonata for Solo Cello. The cello occupies an important position in the output of the Armenian composer Adam Khudoyan. Expressive, heavily inflected by Armenian folk melody, vigorous and with an undercurrent of melancholy, these are all succinct and concentrated pieces, emotionally charged and unlikely to leave the listener unmoved. The coupling is George Crumb's early, and not at all avant-garde solo cello sonata, and that of Paul Hindemith, both young composers exploiting the Romantic possibilities inherent in this most expressive of instruments. Suren Bagratuni (cello), Natalia Khoma (cello). Ongaku 024-104 (U.S.A.) 09-084 $16.98

CARIN MALMLÖF-FORSSLING (b.1916): Flowings for Orchestra, Aum for Soprano Solo, Ahimsa for 8-part Mixed Choir, Silverkvartetten, Albero for Mixed Choir a cappella, Release for Strings, Shanti, shanti for Soprano and Orchestra. Malmlöf-Forssling writes two kinds of music; slow meditative music, inflected by eastern modalism and (in the case of the vocal works) using texts of spiritual significance to almost liturgical effect, and instrumental music, the fast sections of which use rapid oscillating intervallic motifs to create an almost minimalist perpetuum mobile effect, although the effect is not the trancelike stasis of minimalism, but a rather more active, emotional progression - not unlike the music of Stephen Montague. The music is geared to produce an emotional effect above all, and does so unerringly. Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra; Neeme Järvi, Dalecarlian Chamber Orchestra, Gävle Symphony Orchestra; Grzegorz Nowak et al. Bluebell ABCD 069 (Sweden) 09-085 $16.98

TORBJÖRN IWAN LUNDQUIST (b.1920): Arktis - Symphonic Impression, Anrop - 3 Movements for Soprano and Orchestra, Siebenmal Rilke - 7 Songs for Soprano and Orchestra, Symphony No. 1. Another first-rate symphonist and composer of powerful orchestral landscapes from Scandinavia! Lundquist writes powerfully and eloquently, evoking the primitive forces of the mountains, forests and fjords of his northern world. This brooding, granite-boned music recalls the Sibelius of Tapiola, and the musical vocabulary isn't that distant from that of the great Finn, either. Sara Olsson (soprano), Umeå Symphony Orchestra; B Tommy Anderson. Bluebell ABCD 072 (Sweden) 09-086 $16.98

BOHUSLAV MARTINU (1890-1959): Who is the Most Powerful in the World? "Once upon a time there was a little mouse, and she was extremely beautiful and intelligent" - and it is to win her hand that the Prince of Mice has to prove that mice are the most powerful, in this ballet based on a fairy tale. Although not a "serious" work, the score contains much delectable music, including parodies of waltzes and marches from popular styles of stage music, all served up with wit and consummate craftsmanship. Great fun! Prague Symphony Orchestra; JiÞí Bûlohlávek Supraphon 3303 (Czech Republic) 09-087 $16.98

JULIÁN MENÉNDEZ (1896-1975): Introducción, Andante y Danza, Contemplación, MIGUEL YUSTE (1870-1947): Estudio Melódico, ANTONIO ROMERO (1815-1886): Fantasía on Themes of the Opera Lucrezia Borgia by Donizetti, XAVIER MONTSALVATGE (b.1912): Self-paráfrasis, JOAN GUINJOAN (b.1931): Fantasy for Clarinet and Piano, CÉSAR CANO (b.1960): Vigilias, SALVADOR BROTONS (b.1959): Clarinet Sonata. A survey of Spanish music for clarinet and piano from the 19th century to the present day. Romero, Yuste and Menéndez were great clarinet virtuosi whose compositions are staple fare of competitions, auditions and advanced study of the instrument. Technical virtuosity is paramount, but the music is also attractive and inspired, and has been immensely influential in the evolution of Spanish clarinet style. The four contemporary composers, also writing in an approachable style, represent the most outstanding tendencies in the revival of Spanish wind composition. Joan Enric Lluna (clarinet), Jan Gruithuyzen (piano). Clarinet Classics CC0017 (England) 09-088 $17.98

KRISTIN HOLM (b.1965): Dance of the Bacchae, KERSTIN JEPPSSON (b.1948): October 1974: a monologue, NILS HOLGER PETERSEN (b.1946): Fugue on a Theme by Giovanni Gabrieli, Phantasy on a Fragment by Per Nørgard, CHRISTINA WAGNER SMITT (b.1960): Ocean Depths, KARÓLÍNA EIRÍKSDÓTTIR (b.1951): Rondo of a Sorts, ARVO PÄRT (b.1935): For Alena, HELVI LEMMIKI LEIVISKÁ (1902-1982): Canto intima, MAJ SØNSTEVOLD (1917-1996): 6 Bagatelles, BO NILSSON (b.1937): Arctic Romance, FOLKE STRØMHOLM (b.1941): Where Friends Meet. A wide diversity of modern piano music by composers connected more by geography than any musical considerations, ranging from a very modern style - Holm's Dance of the Bacchae is as stylistically abandoned as one might wish, given the subject matter, the Petersen is serial and mathematically complex, while the Eiríksdóttir may not immediately occur to the listener as a rondo, despite its title - to the contemplative minimalism of Pärt, or the simple and touching Arctic Romance of Nilsson. Elisabeth Klein (piano). Classico 165 (Denmark) 09-089 $15.98

GUNTHER SCHULLER (b.1925): Trois Hommages, 4 Duets for Unaccompanied Horns, DAVID AMRAM (b.1930): Songs for Marlboro for Horn and Cello, CARLOS CHÁVEZ (1899-1978): Sonata for 4 Horns, LEONARD BERNSTEIN (1918-1990): Elegy for Mippy I, ROBERT SANDERS (1906-1974): Horn Sonata in B Flat. The principal horn of the New York Philharmonic shines here in a collection of toanl works for his instrument with various accompaniments. The major work is the Chávez sonata which dates from1930 and has enough technical and musical challenges to still terrify horn players (yes, four of them) today. Philip Myers (horn), Maria Kitsopoulos (cello), Virginia Perry Lamb (piano), Erik Ralske, Allen Spanjer, Howard Wall (horns). Cala CACD 0513 (England) 09-090 $16.98

ANTONIO TORRIANI (1829-1911): Divertimento su "Lucia di Lammermoor", Fantasia su "Il Pirata", GIUSEPPE TAMPLINI (1807-1888): Fantasia di bravura su temi di G. Donizetti, LUIGI ORSELLI (18th c.): Fantasia su "Un Ballo in maschera", Reminiscenze su "La Traviata". All these pieces were originally written for bassoon with piano accompaniment ( broadened to a string ensemble for this recording) and represent the typical rage for virtuoso paraphrases, "reminiscences" etc. based on popular opera melodies which occupied instrumentalists and salon patrons for much of the 18th century. Here, bassoon lovers too can get their fill and thrill to some hair-raising playing. Stefano Canuti (bassoon), string quartet & double bass. Foné 96 F 03 (Italy) 09-091 $16.98

DARIUS MILHAUD (1892-1974): String Quartets No. 3, Op. 32, No. 4, Op. 46, No. 9, Op. 140, No. 12, Op. 252. Darius Milhaud was so prolific that the sheer quality of individual works, or even genres, in his output is easy to overlook, a fact which may have contributed to the relative obscurity of a good proportion of his music. These fluid, chromatic quartets, with their subtle, shifting tonalities, elegant melancholy, tender bitterness and dark-hued vitality exemplify the best of his chamber music writing, a genre to which he came early and which, as a string player, meant a great deal to him. The third quartet is unusual in featuring a soprano soloist, like the Schönberg F# minor, which it resembles if only in reaching out for ambiguous alien musical territories - in this case as a response to the death of the composer's friend, the poet Léo Latil. Véronique Dietschy (soprano), Quatuor Parisi. Auvidis Valois V 4781 (France) 09-092 $18.98

EMMANUEL CHABRIER (1841-1894): Bourrée fantasque, THÉODORE DUBOIS (1837-1924): Deuxième suite, VINCENT D'INDY (1851-1931): Chanson et Danses, GABRIEL PIERNÉ (1863-1937): Preludio et Fughetta, REYNALDO HAHN (1857-1947): Le Bal de Béatrice d'Este, FLORENT SCHMITT (1870-1958): Lied et Scherzo, and fanfares by Debussy, Roussel and Dukas. This is a curious collection of music for wind ensemble, musically fascinating and most enjoyable. The music on this CD covers a wide range of styles. Chabrier's bustling Bourrée fantasque suggests the busy street scenes of Toulouse-Lautrec more than the serene lightscapes of Monet, Dubois' Suite has an unmistakably French elegance that seems to prefigure Poulenc, d'Indy dispalys his Wagnerian preoccupations, and so on. The Hahn, a suite of incidental music incorporating deliberate archaisms to suggest a Renaissance style, and the shadowy Lied et Scherzo of Schmitt are of special interest. Serenade Orchestra; Janos Komives. Koch Schwann 3-1568-2 (Germany) 09-093 $16.98

JACQUES IBERT (1890-1962): Angelique. This one-act farce premiered in 1927. It involves the rather sordid plot of a husband selling his wife to three different buyers none of whom can put up with her ebullient spirits. Her husband then cries "To the devil with her!" and, of course, Beelzebub can't handle her either. Ibert himself was fond of the work, saying "Using the voices to the linits of their possibilities, I did not spare the orchestra, using the minimum of instruments to the maximum result." Gaelle Mechaly (soprano), Carmelo Caruso (tenor), Luis Masson (baritone), Orchestra and Chorus of the E.A. Teatro Massimo di Palermo; Yoram David. Fonit Cetra NFCD 2038 (Italy) 09-094 $16.98

FEDERICO MOMPOU (1893-1987): Canciónes y danzas Nos. 1, 3, 5, 7-9, Préludes Nos. 1, 5-7, 9 and 10, Cants Mágics, Charmes, 3 Variations, Dialogues I & II, Paisajes. Stephen Hough (piano). Hyperion CDA 66963 (England) 09-095 $17.98

FEDERICO MOMPOU (1893-1987): Impresiones intimas, Jeunes filles au jardin, Canciónes y danzas Nos. 1, 2, 6-8 & 14, 3 Variations. Mari Kumamoto (piano). Seven Seas KICC 165 (Japan) 09-096 $16.98

Two distinguished discs of music by the Catalan piano miniaturist. In their own way as stylistically free and ambiguous as Scriabin, Mompou's piano works are peculiarly difficult to categorise - abstract, mysterious and compelling, and most resistant to intellectual analysis. Both pianists play selections from the important set of fourteen Canciónes y Danzas, together with a nicely varied selection of other brief pieces, full of elegance, character and charm.

CAMILLE SAINT-SAËNS (1835-1921): Complete Organ Works: 3 Rhapsodies sur des cantiques bretons, Op. 7, Prédication aux oiseaux, Offertoire in E, Bénédiction nuptiale, Op. 9, Élévation ou Communion, Op. 13, 1ère Fantaisie in E Flat, O salutaris hostia, Prélude in C, 3 Préludes et Fugues, Op. 99, 2ième Fantasie, Prélude in F, 2 Versets, Thème, Variation et Chorale de "Dies irae", 7 Improvisations, 3 Préludes et Fugues, Op. 109, Marche religieuse, Op. 107, 9 Pièces pour Orgue ou Harmonium, Prélude in C Minor, 3ième Fantaisie, Op. 157, Cyprés et Lauriers, Op. 156. The first complete recording of Saint-Saëns' organ uvre. 4 CDs. Stefan Johannes Bleicher (organs). Arte Nova 35088 (Germany) 09-097 $35.98

LIU FU-AN (b.1927): Capriccio on an Anhui Folksong, XIN HU-GUANG (b.1933): Symphonic Poem "Ga Da Mei Lin", YANG MU-YUN/LIU YU-BAO/ZHANG KONG-FAN/ DENG ZONG-AN: Lady General Mu Takes Command. The orchestral works presented here paint their subjects in bright, bold colours. Indeed, although the composers involved might not appreciate the suggestion, the world of Hollywood film scores is not far removed from this uncomplicated, evocative and appealing music, enlivened by episodes of traditional Chinese instruments - gongs, drums and the like. Lady General Mu Takes Command was written by a group of composers working with the orchestra that plays on the CD; the other works are by individual composers. Imagine the wilder excesses of Khachaturian, but with a Chinese, rather than Armenian, accent! Central Philharmonic Orchestra of China; Hu Bing-xu. Hugo HRP 770 (Hong Kong) 09-098 $19.98

CHAN PUI-FANG (b.1921): Happy Moonlit River in Spring, QIN YONG-CHENG (b.1933): Cowherd Er-xiao, WANG YI-PING (b.1919): Pixiu Dance, Sketch of the Changjiang Gorges. Chan's work is a brief suite of ancient pipa music transcribed for orchestra; Qin's symphonic poem is a bright, almost garishly colorful depiction of a Chinese war hero who martyred himself while leading his Japanese captors into certain destruction - somewhat like Khachaturian's film scores only really overboard!. Wang's two works are, respectively, a legendary unicorn's dance in traditional Chinese style and a beautiful three-movement tone poem describing some of China's most spectacular scenery in a manner which calls to mind some of the finer European descriptions of similar geographic locales. Central Philharmonic Orchestra of China; Hu Bing-xu. Hugo HRP 7134 (Hong Kong) 09-099 $19.98

MAGNUS LINDBERG (b.1958): Arena 2, Coyote Blues, Tendenza, Corrente. Magnus Lindberg is known for his dynamic, energetic instrumental works, and those who have enjoyed his music in the past will find this new release very rewarding. Bright, lucid textures and a sense of movement based on rapid figuration and harmonic juxtaposition rather than progression propel this music with great kinetic energy. Avanti! Chamber Orchestra; Sakari Oramo. Ondine ODE 882 (Finland) 09-100 $16.98

ASTOR PIAZZOLLA (1921-1992): Tanguedia, Biyuya, Adiós Nonino, Milonga del Angel, La Muerte de Angel, Verano Porteño, Invierno Porteño, Libertango, Michelangelo, Milonga Loca, Tangata. Piazzolla's "tango nuevo" is a style which in appropriate performances can be as richly and vividly evocative of the Latin national character as the stories of Borges or Marquez. These performances, remarkably, equal or surpass those of Piazzolla's own group, and the selection of music explores all the facets inherent in the tango tradition; frank eroticism, unabashed sentimentality, and a sinister underlying subtext of barely suppressed violence. InTime Quartet. Marquis Classics 77471 81203 2 (Canada) 09- 101 $16.98

GEORGE CRUMB (b.1929): Night of the Four Moons, JAY REISE (b.1950): Chesapeake Rhythms, LOUISE TALMA (1906-1996): Diadem, TIMOTHY GREATBATCH: A Clockwork Legend, GERALD LEVINSON (b.1951): in dark. The "classic" work here is George Crumb's Night of the Four Moons (1969), still holding up after nearly thirty years as a fine example of approachable, non-elitist modernity. Described by the composer as "a sort of emotional tone painting", Reise's work takes a fluid, shifting approach to rhythmic development, to haunting effect. Talma's Diadem is economical, crystalline twelve-tone music, as befits its texts, mediæval lapidary essays. After this, Greatbatch's A Clockwork Legend sounds almost Romantic and pastoral; though rhythmically complex and never static, it conveys a warmth lacking in much modern music. The Levinson too is warmly emotional, conveying the nocturnal imagery of the texts through veiled instrumentation and mysterious, shifting harmonies. Barbara Ann Martin (mezzo), Paul Sperry (tenor), Miles B. Davis (double bass), Carmen Pelton (soprano), Orchestra 2001; James Freeman. CRI CD 760 (U.S.A.) 09-102 $16.98

ALEXANDER MOSOLOV (1900-1973): Piano Sonata No. 4, Op. 11, Piano Sonata No. 5, Op. 12, Turkmenian Nights. The most famous post-Scriabin modernist of the Russian school is here represented by two major sonatas whose motoric drive and oddly meandering key-relationships recall Prokofiev. This is music of great sophistication, always with a wry, even slightly sinister, cast, even in the folk-derived Turkmenian Nights, here receiving its premiere recording. Daniele Lombardi (piano). Arte Nova 27793 (Germany) 09-103 $8.98

JUAN JOSÉ FALCÓN SANABRIA (b.1936): Misa gloriosa, LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827): Mass in C, Op. 86. Falcón's glowing, iridescent setting of the Mass is a genuine achievement. In a style oddly (and presumably coincidentally) reminiscent of Britten, and with a similar skill in exploiting the resources of a large orchestra and massed voices in thrilling textures, this Mass is a genuinely uplifting experience. Coral Polifónica de la Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Coro de Camara Entrevoces, Orquestra Filarmónica de Gran Canaria; Adrian Leaper, Tokyo Oratorio Society, Ensemble of Tokyo; Wolfdieter Maurer. Arte Nova 30461 (Germany) 09-104 $8.98

ARTUR SCHNABEL (1882-1951): Seven Pieces, Dance Suite, LUDWIG VAN BEETHOVEN (1770-1827): Piano Sonatas No. 5, Op. 10/1 and No. 30, Op. 109. The 7 pieces, Schnabel's last piano work, is atonal, to be sure, but not at all problematic for the listener - certainly no more so than Scriabin's Op. 74 preludes. The Dance Suite, here receiving its first recording, is even more accessible; unmistakably 20th-century but closer in spirit to La Valse or Invitation to the Waltz than to progressive contemporary forms. Donald Isler (piano). KASP Records 57571 (U.S.A.) 09-105 $11.98

Every month we receive some items too late to put into the catalogue, even though they were ordered for that month. So we had an inspiration: why not add them as an appendix to the web page? So here are the first few, and there will be some more to follow. We have designated them by a numbering system that distinguishes them from the main catalogue - 09-0Letter/Letter. They will be offered again in the next catalogue, with conventional numbering (10-001 etc.)

RUED LANGAARD (1893-1952): 3 Choral Songs, Rose Garden Songs, 16 Motets and Hymn Melodies. Langgaard was a Romantic throwback who maintained a position defiantly at odds with the prevailing musical movements of his time, especially in his native Denmark. That he was a composer of extraordinary ability whose music, judged on its own terms, is among the finest to have come out of Denmark this century, is now unquestionable, and it was even acknowledged during his lifetime, but this did not translate into performances and critical acceptance where and when they might have mattered. Most of his output for unaccompanied chorus is on this CD, and he is thus shown to be a composer with a real feeling for writing for the human voice, using lush Romantic harmonies and an unfailing sense of timbre in the interaction between parts. Vocal Group Ars Nova; Tamás Vetö. Dacapo 8.224058 (Denmark) 09-0AA $14.98

PELLE GUDMUNDSEN-HOLMGREEN (b.1932): Statements, The Creation - The 6th Day, Examples, Je ne me tairai jamais. Jamais, 3 poèmes de Samuel Beckett. Pelle Gudmunsen-Holmgreen is regarded as one of the leading lights of contemporary Danish music. These works for voices and instruments show a composer well versed in the advanced techniques utilised by Ligeti, Berio and Stockhausen, but with a thorough sense of how to use traditional harmony as well. The Creation - The 6th Day contains a concertante violin part of formidable complexity, while the chorus plays an accompanying rôle. The works for unaccompanied choir are gently dissonant, but pay obvious homage to traditional models. The works inspired by the composer's preoccupation with Samuel Beckett use microtones and dissonance extensively, to conjure an absurdist universe illustrating Beckett's ambiguous texts. Je ne me tairai jamais. Jamais. is presented twice, once with French narration, once with Danish. Athelas Sinfonietta Copenhagen; Flemming Windekilde. Vocal Group Ars Nova; Ivan Hansen Dacapo 8.224056 (Denmark) 09-0AB $14.98

SOUND DOCUMENTS OF ITALIAN FUTURISM: Works by ANTONIO RUSSOLO (1885-1947), FRANCESCO BALILLA PRATELLA (1880-1955), GIAN FRANCESCO MALIPIERO (1885-1973), ALFREDO CASELLA (1883-1947) and GIACOMO BALLA (1871-1958). The "futurist" movement that flourished in Italy after the turn of the century now seems rather quaint, in the light of all that has followed since. Slightly more surprising is the fact that its output does not, on the whole, sound like bad music or point-proving. The spectre of Busoni looms large (but nebulous and mostly inaudible) behind the movement, which took speculations in his "sketch for a new æsthetic of music" and ran with them in ways that have very little to do with Busoni. A preoccupation with mechanically produced sounds (the sounds of machinery, as well as mechanical instruments such as the pianola) and post-Le Sacre primitivism are the main characteristics to be heard here. Luigi Russolo ("The Noisemaker") is represented by some machine sounds interpreted as music, which may be regarded now as a piece of experimental music history, but the bulk of the music here is well worth listening to in its own right. Archive recordings and piano rolls, well restored and reproduced. Fonoteca FT-95.08.02 (Italy) 09-0AC $16.98

FERRUCCIO BUSONI (1866-1924): Fantasia contrappuntistica, Toccata. Preludion-Fantasia-Ciaccona, Sonatina seconda, Sonatina in diem nativitatis Christi MCMXVII, Berceuse. This well-filled disc usefully collects together some of Busoni's outstanding solo piano works, including the strange, occult Sonatina Seconda and the equally disturbing late Toccata, both incorporating music which Busoni also used in his opera Doktor Faust (those who find such musical cross-referencing fascinating may recall that Scots composer and Busoni scholar Ronald Stevenson quotes from the Sonatina in his Prelude Fugue and Fantasy on Busoni's "Doktor Faust", including a verbatim quote used as a brief cadenza). The major work here is the massive Fantasia contrappuntistica, a masterly edifice built on the foundations of Bach's unfinished triple fugue from the Art of Fugue. Giuseppe Mariotti (piano). Foné 96 F 07 (Italy) 09-0AD $16.98

MARTTI TURUNEN (1902-1979): Sunday, OSKAR MERIKANTO (1868-1924): Annina, Thou art a Nugget of Gold, Remembering, OTTO KOTILAINIEN (1868-1936): Cloud Dance, LEEVI MADETOJA (1887-1947): If You'd Sometimes Weep at Evening, Winter Moonlight, Dark Herbs, You Thought I was Watching You, Bluebird, ERKKI MELARTIN (1875-1937): Along Forest Paths I Wander, The Grasshopper's Honeymoon, ILMARI HANNIKAINEN (1892-1955): Peace, TOIVO KUULA (1893-1918): Autumn Mood, Morning Song, Come, My Love, SELIM PALMGREN (1878-1951): Summer Island, In the Rushes, The Charcoal Burner, Song of an Idler, LAURI IKONEN (1888-1966): My Room is Growing Darker, VILHO LUOLAJAN-MIKKOLA (b.1911): Wedding Dance, HEINO KASKI (1885-1957): After You Went Away, FRANS LINNAVUORI (1880-1926): I SIng for Your Evening the Starlight. Many of Finland's finest composers wrote songs which bridge the gap between popular and art music, filling much the role of popular operatic arias in Italian culture. This recital brings together well known and less commonly performed songs with orchestral accompaniment by Madetoja, Palmgren, Merikanto and a number of other less recognisable names, outside Finland at least. Falling somewhere between Neopolitan songs and classical Lieder, these songs are light and lyrical, some possessing an almost Schubertian sweetness and melancholy. Jorma Hynninen (baritone), Tampere Philharmonic Orchestra; Ulf Söderblom. Ondine ODE 880 (Finland) 09-0AE $16.98

EMMANUEL CHABRIER (1841-1894): Complete Mélodies. Chabrier was a buoyant, colorful, lively composer and he could not follow entirely in the footsteps of such traditional mélodistes as Fauré. He himself declared "What I do not want are those eternal flower beds in three couplets where one picks rose hips and chrysanthemums..." He wrote only 23 mélodies and only four were published during his lifetime: 4 "zoological romances" which may have influenced Ravel's Histoires naturelles. Most instructive here, perhaps, is Chabrier's setting of LInvitation au voyage to which he delightfully adds an obbligato bassoon! French-English texts. Agnès Mellon (soprano), Franck Leguérinel (baritone), Françoise Tillard (piano). Timpani 1C1038 (France) 09-0AF $17.98

RICHARD STRAUSS (1864-1949): Sonatina No. 1 "Aus der Werkstatt eines Invaliden", Sonatina No. 2 "Fröhliche Werkstatt", Serenade in E Flat, Op. 7, Suite in B Flat, Op. 4. Strauss' complete works for winds bracketed his long life: the suite and serenade from his late teens and the two sonatinas from his 79th and 81st years. This re-release offers the finest performances now available of all these works and at a bargain price. 2 CDs for the price of 1. London Winds. Hyperion Dyad CDD 22015 (England) 09-0AG $17.98