John McCabe: Mountains

This new album from the late John McCabe dates back to 1985. He visited the EMI studios in Sydney to make an album of works by American and Australian composers. The project never materialised, the studios closed, and the masters were presumed lost. Then a cassette copy found among the composer’s papers, and remastered. This […]

Erik Simmons: Jubilee, Carson Cooman organ music vol. 10

Carson Cooman makes Neil Young look a slacker, and many of Young’s albums are from the vaults, not new. Cooman is composer in residence at the Memorial Church, Harvard University, and a prolific composer, the recordings often played by Erik Simmons — this is his 10th Cooman organ album for Divine Art. This latest collection […]

Eitenne Cutajar: Mdina Music For Horn

This is a new recording of (as the name suggests) music for horn by Etienne Cutajar, featuring violinist Carmine Lauri and pianist John Reid. The music comes from Beethoven, Brahms and Richard Strauss as well as modern composers Heinz Holliger, Jesmond Grixti and Jörg Widman; the work Mdina is by Grixti. Cutajar is principal horn […]

Aylish Kerrigan: The Dream Bridge – Songs by Ives and Cowell

Charles Ives is called the father of contemporary American music, say the release notes. He was an innovator and a loner with a brilliant mind, and the songs chosen for this album range from the simplistic to the most complex, and represent the eclectic range of styles Ives used, from jazz to gospel. Henry Cowell […]

The Mornington Singers: To the Northeast, The Choral Music of John Buckley

The title suggested something like the Kings Singers, a jolly choir singing jolly tunes, but within a second it’s clear this is not the case: opener Music, When Soft Voices Die is a beautiful and timeless sacred-sounding song, suggestive of sitting in a church listening to music and pondering life and eternity. The only actual […]

Maria Lettberg: Zara Levina, Piano Concertos

Zara Aleksandrovna Levina died in 1976 and, as you might guess, was a Soviet pianist and composer, now sadly languishing in relative obscurity. This new CD from (mainly) pianist Maria Lettberg aims to put that right, and it’s a pleasingly varied programme of music; you wouldn’t necessarily guess it was all the same composer. The […]

Mariko Terashi: Piano

We perhaps were not expecting too much from a Japanese pianist playing a Portuguese (Carlos de Seixas) composer, never having heard of either, but that just shows you should never judge. José António Carlos de Seixas (1704–1742) is described as a composer during the “golden age” of Portugal, an accomplished virtuoso of both the organ […]

Robert Loreggian: Bach – Goldberg Variations

This is the second or third CD we’ve had with the Goldberg Variations “played as they were mean to”. This time, Loreggian is playing a copy of a harpsichord made by Michael Mietke in the early years of the 18th century; exchanges between the maker and Bach are documented. Loreggian is a top notch player. […]