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 New Release Round-up, New Release Round-Up - 29th January 2020

New Releases 29th January 2021Today's new releases include the first volume of a new Rachmaninov project from the Philadelphia Orchestra and Yannick Nézet-Séguin (Gramophone's February Recording of the Month), Winterreise from Roderick Williams and Iain Burnside, selections from Book II of the Well-Tempered Clavier from Piotr Anderszewski, and commemorations of the 500th anniversary of Josquin's death from Stile Antico and the Brabant Ensemble.

The Philadelphia Orchestra, Yannick Nézet-Séguin

Nézet-Séguin and the Philadelphia Orchestra proved their Rachmaninov credentials with their outstanding accounts of the four piano concertos with Daniil Trifonov in 2018 and 2019, with BBC Music Magazine describing them as ‘superbly attentive partners’ and The Sunday Times declaring that ‘the Philadelphians’ contribution could hardly be grander or more sumptuous’. This is the first release in a series which will be completed in 2023 to mark the 150th anniversary of the composer’s birth.

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

Norrköping Symphony Orchestra, Swedish Radio Choir, Eric Ericson Chamber Choir, Christian Lindberg

Commissioned to mark the 500th anniversary of Uppsala University and premiered in 1977, Pettersson's Symphony No. 12 sets nine poems by Pablo Neruda, which were written in response to the killing of six demonstrators during a Chilean workers’ manifestation in the 1940s; this third account of the work on disc was described in Gramophone as 'the best-recorded...and, I think, the best-sung'.

Available Formats: SACD, MP3, FLAC

Moravian Philharmonic Orchestra, Dario Salvi

Welcoming the first instalment of this Auber series in 2019, Fanfare pronounced that the Czech musicians ‘play this music with wonderful spirit, and the performances sound both well-rehearsed and spontaneous’; this third volume opens with the Grande ouverture pour l'inauguration de l'exposition à Londres, and also includes the overture to La Muette de Portici and excerpts from Les chaperons blancs, La barcarolle, and Lestocq, ou l'intrigue et l'amour.

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

Ilya Gringolts (violin), Finnish Baroque Orchestra

Published in 1733, Locatelli’s twelve concerti L’arte del violino broke all manner of new ground in terms of violin technique, and exerted a strong influence on subsequent generations of composers and virtuosos; this album takes its title from the final work in the set, which the composer named ‘Laberinto armonico’ and described as ‘easy to enter; difficult to escape!’. It’s preceded here by Nos. 9 and 11, with Gringolts directing from the violin – a Ferdinando Gagliano from around 1770.

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

London Haydn Quartet

The London Haydn Quartet’s period-instrument recordings of works by their namesake have met with widespread critical acclaim, with BBC Music Magazine praising their ‘amazing precision of intonation and articulation’ and The Strad observing that ‘there’s an eloquence in the overall playing that shines through’; this latest instalment comprises the six works which Haydn dedicated to Count Joseph Georg von Erdődy in the late 1790s, including the ‘Emperor’, ‘Fifths’ and ‘Sunrise’ quartets.

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

Stephen Hough (piano)

The composer-pianist’s new album takes its title not from Falla’s opera but from his own Piano Sonata No. 4, premiered in 2018 and conceived as a meditation on the brevity of human life; the programme also includes Chopin’s Piano Sonata No. 2 ‘Marche funèbre’, Liszt’s Funérailles and Bagatelle sans tonalite, Busoni’s Chamber Fantasy on Themes from Bizet's Carmen, and Gounod’s Méditation on Bach’s ‘Ave Maria’.

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

The Polish pianist presents twelve preludes and fugues from Book II 'in a sequence of my own subjective choosing, based sometimes on key relationships, at other times on contrasts'; the recording was an Editor's Choice in the latest edition of Gramophone, with Harriet Smith (Paul's guest on this week's Presto Podcast) reflecting that 'the result has the feeling of a Baroque Carnaval'.

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

Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, RIAS Kammerchor, René Jacobs

Jacobs and the RIAS Kammerchor performed what the Belgian conductor describes as an ‘exhausting, unsettling work’ throughout Europe in 2019, and the concerts have appeared regularly on streaming services this year as performances scheduled to mark the composer’s 250th anniversary were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic. The soloists are Polina Pasztircsák, Sophie Harmsen, Steve Davislim, and Johannes Weisser.

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

The first of a projected trilogy of Decca recordings from the British vocal ensemble is released to commemorate the 500th anniversary of the death of Josquin Des Prez; the centrepiece the Missa Pange lingua, and the programme also features 'Ave Maria, virgo serena', 'Inviolata, integra et casta es Maria', the world premiere recording of the chanson 'Vivrai je tousjours', and tributes to Josquin by Hieronymus Vinders and Jacquet de Mantua.

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

The Brabant Ensemble, Stephen Rice

Flemish Renaissance polyphony specialists The Brabant Ensemble are also marking the Josquin anniversary, with a programme of motets including Usquequo, Domine, oblivisceris me, O bone et dulcissime Jesu, Huc me sydereo, the Stabat mater a 6, and two free-standing mass movements published by Ottaviano Petrucci in 1505: the Gloria de beata virgine and Sanctus de Passione.

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

Roderick Williams (baritone), Iain Burnside (piano)

This is the final instalment of Williams and Burnside’s Schubert project, which began in 2015 and saw the baritone preparing and performing the composer’s three great song-cycles over the course of a single season at Wigmore Hall (you can read his excellent blog about the process here). Reviewing their recording of Die schöne Müllerin, Gramophone observed that ‘both [Williams] and Burnside give the impression of having rethought and re-examined every song’.

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

Christian Immler (baritone), Helmut Deutsch (piano)

The Austrian-British composer Hans Gál published just one set of Lieder (the five songs Op. 33, which close this lovely recital), but ‘laid aside’ many more which he composed between 1910 and 1921; Immler and Deutsch give the world premiere recordings of twenty-six of them here, including settings of poems by Walther von der Vogelweide, Heinrich Heine, Hermann Hesse, and Rabindranath Tagore.

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

Academy of Ancient Music, Julian Perkins

This is the first professional recording of Eccles’s Ovid-inspired opera, composed almost forty years before Handel’s setting of the same text by William Congreve (with whom Eccles was firm friends); Cambridge Independent described a live performance given by these artists in 2019 as ‘outstanding in every conceivable way’. Look out for David's interview with Julian Perkins about the piece in the coming weeks.

Available Formats: 2 CDs, MP3, FLAC, Hi-Res FLAC, Hi-Res+ FLAC

Bethany Kingsley-Garner (The Snow Queen), Constance Devernay (Gerda), Andrew Peasgood (Kai); Scottish Ballet, Jean-Claude Picard, Christopher Hampson, Lez Brotherston

Inspired by Hans Christian Andersen’s beloved fairy-tale and featuring music by Rimsky-Korsakov, this 2019 production was praised in The Scotsman for its 'beautifully delivered, robust choreography' and described by The Guardian as 'sumptuously designed, intelligent, sexy and romantic...preserv[ing] the ambiguities of Andersen’s tale'.

Available Format: DVD Video

Bethany Kingsley-Garner (The Snow Queen), Constance Devernay (Gerda), Andrew Peasgood (Kai); Scottish Ballet, Jean-Claude Picard, Christopher Hampson, Lez Brotherston,

Picture format: 1080i

Sound format: LPCM stereo 2.0 & DTS-MA 5.1

Available Format: Blu-ray