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 New Release Round-up, New Release Round-Up - 9th November 2018

Today's headline new releases include an appropriately incendiary Götterdãmmerung from Jaap van Zweden and the Hong Kong Philharmonic (completing their excellent ‘Naxos Ring’ which was begun in 2015), Mozart sonatas from Isabelle Faust and Alexander Melnikov, and a riveting Eroica from Maxim Emelyanychev and his Russian chamber orchestra.

Nizhny Novgorod Soloists Chamber Orchestra, Maxim Emelyanychev

The incoming principal conductor of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra (whose white-hot recording of Handel's Serse with Franco Fagioli was released last Friday on Deutsche Grammophon) directs the Soloists of Nizhny Novgorod for the first time on disc in an Eroica that’s red in tooth and claw and crackles with the same raw energy as his mentor Teodor Currentzis’s Mozart opera series.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Wang’s recording of Tchaikovsky’s Second Piano Concerto with the same forces was a Gramophone Editor’s Choice in May 2016 and won praise from International Piano for her ‘unfailingly fleet and musical’ approach; here she performs the First Piano Concerto in its less familiar original version, and rounds out the album with Scriabin’s sole piano concerto, composed at breakneck speed in 1896.

Available Formats: SACD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Isabelle Faust (violin), Alexander Melnikov (piano)

Following a Gramophone Award-winning survey of Beethoven’s violin sonatas (also praised by BBC Music Magazine as ‘the most stimulating and fascinating accounts of the Beethoven violin sonatas I have heard in many years’) and joint recordings of Brahms, Schubert, Schumann, Debussy, Hindemith and Shostakovich, Faust and Melnikov team up once more for Mozart’s sonatas K304, K306 and K526.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

The London Haydn Quartet

Previous instalments of The London Haydn Quartet’s period-instrument survey of works by their namesake have been described as ‘strikingly austere’ (The Guardian on Op. 20), ‘admirably poised, expansive and superbly recorded’ (Early Music Today on Op. 50 Nos. 1-6) and ‘faultless in dexterity and intonation’ (The Observer on Opp.54 & 55); the fourth volume of the series was shortlisted for a Gramophone Award in 2014.

Available Format: 2 CDs

Nemanja Radulovic (violin), Borusan Istanbul Philharmonic Orchestra, Sascha Goetzel

After offering a whistle-stop musical tour through Eastern Europe on his debut solo album Journey East, the Serbian violinist travels further afield to explore fantastic visions of the Orient (the word ‘Baïka’ is roughly synonymous with ‘fairy-tale’), including Khachaturian’s Violin Concerto and Clarinet Trio, and an arrangement of Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade for violin, piano and string quartet by Aleksandar Sedlar.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Daniel Müller-Schott (cello), Deutsches Symphonie-Orchester Berlin Aziz Shokhakimov

Tchaikovsky is the beating heart of the German cellist’s Russian recital, which includes the Rococo Variations, Pezzo capriccioso, Souvenir d’un lieu cher, and an arrangement of the well-known Andante cantabile from the String Quartet No. 1 for cello and piano; the programme also includes the orchestral version of Rimsky Korsakov’s Serenade and Glazunov’s Chant du Ménestrel.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Marina Rebeka (soprano), Orchestra e Coro del Teatro Massimo di Palermo, Jader Bignamini

Following her all-Rossini album Amor fatale (described by Gramophone as ‘an impressive Rossinian calling-card from a formidable singer’), the Latvian soprano continues her explorations of bel canto with arias from Donizetti’s Maria Stuarda and Anna Bolena, Spontini’s La vestale, and Bellini’s Il Pirata and Norma; she debuted the latter role to great acclaim at the Metropolitan Opera last October.

Available Formats: CD, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Gun-Brit Barkmin, Daniel Brenna, Eric Halfvarson; Hong Kong Philharmonic, Jaap van Zweden

The culmination of Naxos’s ‘Hong Kong Ring’ (recorded live in concerts between January 2015 and 2018) features a powerful debut as Brünnhilde from German soprano Gun-Brit Barkmin and more of the coruscating orchestral playing that’s distinguished the entire project. Look out for Katherine’s interview with Jaap Van Zweden about the cycle early next week.

Available Formats: 4 CDs, MP3, CD Quality FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC

Gun-Brit Barkmin, Daniel Brenna, Eric Halfvarson; Hong Kong Philharmonic, Jaap van Zweden

5.1 Surround 2.0 Stereo

Available Format: Blu-ray Audio

Piero Cappuccilli, Shirley Verrett, Nicolai Ghiaurov, Plácido Domingo; Teatro alla Scala, Claudio Abbado

Abbado’s vivid 1976 studio account of Macbeth is widely regarded as one of the finest on disc, thanks in part to the blazing chemistry of Verrett and Cappuccilli. Along with Giulini’s Rigoletto and Karl Böhm’s Zauberflöte, it’s one of the latest classic opera recordings to get the deluxe treatment from Deutsche Grammophon, remastered to 24-bit audio and accompanied by a hardback book including full libretto and translations.

Available Format: 2 CDs + Blu-ray Audio

Christopher Maltman, Eva-Maria Westbroek, Frank van Aken, Sir Willard White; Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, Marc Albrecht

Filmed at the Dutch National Opera last March, Krzysztof Warlikowski’s staging of Berg’s first opera was described as ‘ugly, and disturbingly brilliant’ by BachTrack and ‘a consummate Wozzeck, blending clarity, lyricism, compassion and crushing force’ by the Financial Times; Maltman and Westbroek make highly impressive role-debuts as the tortured soldier and his common-law wife.

Available Format: Blu-ray

Sächsische Staatskapelle Dresden, Antonio Pappano

Rachmaninov began work on his Second Symphony shortly after relocating from Moscow to Dresden in the aftermath of the 1905 Revolution; this DVD explores the work’s genesis via the 45-minute documentary Sergei Rachmaninoff in Dresden and also includes a complete performance of the symphony, a work which Pappano has previously recorded to great acclaim with the Orchestra dell’Accademia Nazionale di Santa Cecilia.

Available Format: DVD Video