Category: Classical

  • Helen Habershon and John Lenehan: Found in Dreams

    You’re always on safe ground with Helen Habershon, who writes music for people to enjoy, and not expend any energy “getting into”. This new album is lovely, the title perhaps giving a clue as to the gentle nature of the music. Her approachable sound is obviously onto something: this is her fourth album, with one […]

  • State Choir Latvija: Sempiterna, Choral music by Rhona Clarke

    The works on this album range over 30 years of composing for Clarke. The sleeve notes say that Clarke was 15 when she joined the Lindsay Singers, a female-voice choir in Dublin and sang during her time as student in University College Dublin and her PhD studies at Queen’s University Belfast. “This long engagement with […]

  • Camden Reeves: Blue Sounds

    This is not a classical pianist’s take on the blues but a study on the colour, from its abstractness as an electromagnetic wave to blues as a scale, a genre and a harmonic structure. Blue is clearly an inspiring colour: artist Yves Klein famously went through a blue phase, selecting blue after audiences failed to […]

  • Fülöp Ránki: Béla Bartók Piano Music Vol.8 Rhapsody, Variations, For Children, Études

    The first seven volumes in Naxos’ series of Béla Bartók’s complete piano works were recorded by Jeno Jandó, one of Naxos’ longest established artists, but for this he has handed over to one of his students, Fülöp Ránki, a young Hungarian pianist; this is his Naxos debut, and he plays impressively. It’s a rich and […]

  • Robin Stevens: Music for Cello and Piano

    This modern album is not so instantly accessible but despite its modern and sometimes austere sound it’s a long way from being difficult. The PR says that Stevens writes “stimulating and expressive” work influenced by everything from the music of the Romantic era to mathematics and the eclectic nature of the composer means that something […]

  • Various Scenes from the Kalevala

    The Kalevala is a compilation of folk poetry, arranged into 50 extensive runos (poems) by the Finnish physician and folklorist Elias Lönnrot. Beginning with the creation of the world, it develops into a series of separate episodes, introducing epic characters whose names have lots of vowels and umlauts, like Väinämöinen. The collection first appeared in […]

  • Alfonso Soldano: Metamorphoses

    Soldano is professor of piano performance at the Giordano Conservatory in Foggia, Italy. He was awarded the International Gold Medal for best Italian artist in 2013 and has performed and given masterclasses all around Italy, and in Germany, Switzerland and Romania. So he’s good. This new album sees him transcribe 15 of Rachmaninov’s romantic songs […]

  • Hafliði Hallgrímsson: Offerto

    Hafliði Hallgrímsson is regarded as Iceland’s pre-eminent composer, as well as a highly accomplished cellist. You prog rockers might have heard him, too: in 1970, he played the (uncredited) cello solo on Atom Heart Mother by Pink Floyd. This new album follows a request in 2005 from violinist Peter Sheppard Skærved, who asked Hallgrímsson to […]

  • Benedetto Boccuzzi: À Claude

    The Claude in question is Mr Debussy but if you’re expecting an album of Clair de Lune delicacy you’d be mistaken, as Boccuzzi’s album takes off from where Debussy leads, moving from the dreamy to the avante garde, the idea being to show the link between Debussy and composers old and new, including Boccuzzi himself. […]

  • Zeynep Ucbasaran: 1847, Liszt in Istanbul

    This lively and more-ish album of piano music consists of a selection of works from the 1847 Istanbul recitals of Franz Liszt.Lizst had arrived to entertain and was given a seven-octave piano by craftsman Sébastien Pierre Erard to play on while he was in what was then Constantinople. He played at the Royal Palace, the […]