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Musique symphonique - Verschenen op 18 januari 2019 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
Alpha begins a complete cycle of the symphonies by Sibelius alongside some of his symphonic poems with Gothenburg Symphony and its new chief conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali. In the great tradition of Finnish conductors, Santtu-Matias Rouvali is known for his extremely physical and organic interpretations: ‘Music unmistakeably flows from him’, commented The Sunday Times. This was evident when, at a very young age, he stepped in to conduct a concert with the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra which began the journey to his first tenure as Chief Conductor with the Tampere Philharmonic; a meteoric rise to a career working at the highest musical level internationally; and a third post as Principal Guest Conductor of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London. When Bachtrack asked him how he shapes the orchestral sound, he replied: ‘I sing it, I move my hands the way I want it (…) the conductor should be able to show tempo somewhere in the body (…) I was also a drum kit player, so my feet and hands can do different things at the same time. When you read the score, you sing it in your head (…) I think it’s the sense of inside groove that you get from playing percussion which is very important in Sibelius’s music.’ In the Gothenburg Symphony he finds a prestigious cohort of musicians with an impressive discography, and joins a line of their illustrious musical directors, notably Neeme Järvi, the orchestra’s principal conductor from 1982 to 2004, but also Gustavo Dudamel, who is honorary conductor. © Outhere Music
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Piano solo - Verschenen op 30 november 2018 | Mirare

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
Through his “brilliance and maturity” (as described by The Guardian) the Russian-Lithuanian pianist Lukas Geniušas has established himself on the international scene as one of the most interesting artists of his generation. He has appeared in London's Wigmore Hall, Amsterdam's Concertgebouw, Milan's Salle Verdi, Moscow's Conservatory and Roque d'Anthéron, and with orchestras such as the Philharmonique de Radio France, the National de Lyon, the NHK of Tokyo, the Saint Petersburg Philharmonic, the Russian National Orchestra, the list goes on... He has chosen here a Prokofiev programme combining early works from his younger years (the Ten Pieces Op. 12 which is a junior work and yet so intimately prokofievian already!) with the work from his first stage of maturity (Second Sonata from 1912) and the work from his full maturity (the Fifth Sonata). Even better, this Fifth Sonata was written "for the first time" in 1923 after his time in Paris, then revised three decades later under the constraint, undoubtedly, of the infamous Jdanov decree which had accused the composer of all anti-Soviet evils, but also due to a very personal concern (he wanted to purify the piano gesture). In a way this work seems almost "Parisian" as it has so many similarities with Poulenc's style. © SM/Qobuz
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Classique - Verschenen op 22 maart 2019 | La Dolce Volta

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Musique de chambre - Verschenen op 5 oktober 2018 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Opérette - Verschenen op 11 januari 2019 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - Diapason d'or / Arte - Choc de Classica
The elegant Jodie Devos puts her talents to work in service of a fairly unknown known side of Offenbach, taking on several somewhat-forgotten pieces which call for very specific voices, known in Offenbach’s day by names such as "chanteuse d’agilité", "chanteuse à roulade" or "première chanteuse légère". Of course, everyone knows the tune of the doll Olympia from Tales of Hoffmann, or the telling of the death of Eurydice in Orpheus in the Underworld, but the substantial repertoire of the composer's smaller pieces (which he generally referred to as "operettas" to distinguish them from his larger works, his famous opéras bouffe) contains a number of virtuoso arias for coloratura soprano. In them, we hear the vocal imitation of the jeu perlé piano technique or of Paganini's "flying staccato", in which unstinting bravura hides the real difficulty behind something apparently easy. But the difference from many bel canto composers, who merely show off vocals and melody, is that Offenbach knows how to charge these things with emotion, with textual significance, with personality, and with contrasts: simple mechanics never take precedence over diversity. This record allows us to discover a neat little collection of sadly little-known works which are well overdue a return to the French stage. © SM/Qobuz
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Messes, Passions, Requiems - Verschenen op 19 oktober 2018 | Glossa

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique - 5 étoiles de Classica
The modern-day appreciation of Francesco Bartolomeo Conti takes a decisive turn in the direction of his church music with this early eighteenth-century composer’s Missa Sancti Pauli given an ideal recording on Glossa by György Vashegyi, the Purcell Choir and Orfeo Orchestra. Conti was a Florentine who worked for much of his career in the Imperial Court in Vienna, generating much attention there – the ever-observant Johann Sebastian Bach and Zelenka were both known to have been attracted by his music. Curiously, it was liturgical works like this 1715 Missa Sancti Pauli which kept Conti’s name known until near to the end of the nineteenth century rather than the operas, oratorios and cantatas with which he delighted the Viennese Court and which have hitherto been receiving the attention of artists and record labels today. If Conti’s church music is less fledgling Classical than his dramatic fare, there is much in the way of melodic tunefulness and concertato style – for both voices and instruments – to combine with fugalimitative writing reminiscent of the “stile antico”. The work is a “Credo Mass” (both Mozart and Beethoven were to write examples of this genre, with its rondolike restatement of the word in the Credo section. The tone, control, presence and unity of the Purcell Choir have been amply demonstrated already on Glossa in music of the French Baroque – Rameau and Mondonville in particular – and the singers are given full opportunity to shine in Conti’s mass – as are the orchestra, comprised mainly of strings, and the vocal soloists, who include Adriána Kalafszky, Péter Bárány, Zoltán Megyesi and Thomas Dolié. Bárány and Megyesi are also soloists in two additional works: the motet, Fastos caeli audite and the aria Pie Jesu, ad te refugio. © Glossa
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Cantates (profanes) - Verschenen op 2 november 2018 | Ricercar

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - 5 étoiles de Classica
Given that he wrote about 115 operas (of which at least 70 have survived to this day), 800 cantatas of all kinds, shedloads of symphonies and serenades, and dozens of the most varied kinds of liturgical works, Alessandro Scarlatti remains under-played today. The album concentrates on a few of these innumerable cantatas which are almost all preserved in their original manuscript form and quite a few of which belong to the Arcadian genre. This is to say that they deal with the bucolic mythology of nymphs and shepherds from Arcadia (in the Peloponnese in Greece) developed during the Renaissance. Love, betrayal and reunions are all displayed here, some in solo cantatas – soprano or baritone – and other cantatas in dialogue for two voices. Some have nothing but a continuo for an accompaniment, others have two violins with continuo. Everything seems to indicate that at the time of writing these pieces were meant to entertain nobles in their palaces, especially during the many periods of the year when the Church forbade public performances. Without a doubt these pieces were played once or twice and then forgotten... And here they are, rescued from oblivion by the soprano Deborah Cachet and the baritone Nicolas Achten, who, as well as singing, conducts his ensemble Scherzi Musicali and plays the theorbo, the triple harp and the organ. © SM/Qobuz
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Classique - Verschenen op 1 maart 2019 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Ernest Chausson is a most unusual figure in French music, positioned at the crossroads where the romanticism of Berlioz and Franck meet the language of Wagner and the symbolism of the young Debussy. His Poème de l’amour et de la mer is a unique score for the period and certainly his greatest work; simultaneously a profane, naturistic cantata, a monologue, and a song cycle, it was composed between 1882 and 1892. Véronique Gens is recording this cycle for the first time, although she has already issued Le temps des lilas with Susan Manoff at the piano ("Néère"), about which Ernst Van Bek wrote in Classiquenews: « it mesmerises with the nuancing of its colours, the allusive precision of every sung word ». Véronique Gens’ talent is equally on display in this recording too, with the Orchestre National de Lille – an orchestra she already knows well – under Alexandre Bloch, its new chief conductor, whose appointment and first concerts and recordings have already caused a sensation… The Symphony in B-flat major completes this programme: a summit of French symphonic writing, for some a milestone as important as the Symphony in D of Chausson’s teacher César Franck! © Outhere Music
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Musique vocale (profane et sacrée) - Verschenen op 3 mei 2019 | Signum Records

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Diapason d'or - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Le Choix de France Musique
Fans of the British crown’s splendour will certainly marvel at this double album that reproduces the coronation anthems of the four monarchs of the 20th century: Edward VII in 1902, George V in 1911, George VI in 1937, and current Queen Elizabeth II in 1953. Very few of today’s ceremonies can reach such levels of grandeur.At the crossroads of tradition and innovation, these coronation ceremonies are characterised by the evocation of past heritage works, and the addition of numerous pieces commissioned specifically for the occasion to the best composers in the kingdom. For such events, Westminster Abbey is closed for several months to allow an army of craftsmen to build monumental galleries capable of hosting up to eight thousand guests. Then come the rehearsals with 400-singer choirs, half of them children, an immense orchestra, and the indispensable great organ.This recording is a selection of the best moments of these ceremonies, presented as a single liturgical structure. This ample reconstitution led by Paul McCreesh follows for the most part the 1937 ceremony, dropping however the era’s typical style when interpreting Handel. The musical approach has changed so much that it is presented here in the “baroque” style characteristic of our early 21st century. Some difficult choices were made, particularly regarding the Te Deum, the centrepiece and climax of the ceremony. A Cornelian choice between the ones from Stanford (1902), Parry (1911), Vaughan Williams (1937) and William Walton (1953). The latter was finally chosen, for its radiance and theatrical impetus. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Concertos pour violoncelle - Verschenen op 2 november 2018 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - Exceptional sound - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Lutosławski's Cello Concerto and Dutilleux’s Tout un monde lointain (also a cello concerto) are linked by their unique destinies. Both were led by Rostropovitch; both were started in 1967 and both were created by the patron in 1970. Both were performed "in the West": one in London, the other in Aix-en-Provence; and that's when things started to unravel for Rostropovich, who fell out of favour with Brezhnev's regime in the USSR. When the soloist left the USSR for good in 1974, Lutosławski's Concerto suffered the same fate in the East and was hardly played there for a long time. While the two works are perfectly contemporary, and the two composers as well, the difference between them couldn't be greater. Whilst Lutosławski's Concerto seems to describe chaos, with a soloist part that resembles a Don Quixote battling against an orchestra, Tout un monde lointain bathes in a fantastical light, where the cello is primus inter pares with the orchestra. Two visions, both so different, defended here with the same ardour by cellist Johannes Moser, who has worked on them and played them many times over, and his experience has produced a recording where every inflection is carefully chosen. © SM/Qobuz
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Classique - Verschenen op 23 november 2018 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Duos - Verschenen op 9 november 2018 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
At a time when Mozart was writing his first sonatas for violin and clavier, in 1778, it was the done thing to write piano sonatas with violin accompaniment in which the violin part is fairly unobtrusive. The purpose of this was not to put off the target audience for the scores: educated amateurs. But Mozart paid no heed to this convention and took off into a new world with real duets, in which the two instruments found themselves on an even footing. At the same time, he avoided the corrective exaggeration which would appear in some scores which resembled violin concertos with a little piano support. Here we have a perfect balance between the two players: Isabelle Faust on the violin and Alexander Melnikov at the clavier. The latter of the two plays on a copy of a Viennese fortepiano made in 1795 by Anton Walter. The sound balance is utterly perfect, which is a relief, as all too often these sonatas either favour the keyboard part when played on the piano or the violinist tries to force it. We have here two sonatas written in Paris shortly after the death of Mozart's mother (who accompanied him on the journey), and then another from 1787 written in the wake of Leopold Mozart's death. Despite this the composer seems to be putting on a brave face, flashing a smile tinged with a tender nostalgia on the Sonata in E Minor K. 304. © SM/Qobuz
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Concertos pour clavier - Verschenen op 3 mei 2019 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - Diapason d'or / Arte
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Musique vocale sacrée - Verschenen op 14 juni 2019 | Ondine

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
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Piano solo - Verschenen op 1 februari 2019 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama
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Musique de chambre - Verschenen op 2 november 2018 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
Founded in 2005, the Chiaroscuro Quartet brings together musicians from all the corners of Europe: the Russian Alina Ibragimova and the Spaniard Pablo Hernán Benedi on violins, the Swede Emilie Hörlund on the viola and France's Claire Thirion on the cello. From their very first performances Chiaroscuro have been hailed as "a trailblazer for the authentic performance of High Classical chamber music" by the very highbrow UK music magazine Gramophone, and "a shock to the ears of the best kind" by The Observer. Indeed, their performance of Schubert is compelling in its rhythmic freedom and its limitless palette of contrasts. It goes from the gentlest pianissimo to the most resounding full-bowed fortissimos by way of a thousand and one shades which are hardly ever heard in the performances of "classical" quartets. In their hands, the discourse of Death and the Maiden takes on a bitterness, a pure romanticism and even a level of modernity as they strip out the rather sepia-Vienna aspect which some traditional interpretations feature. As for the Ninth Quartet in G minor, it's one of the those Schubertian miracles written in his adolescence: coming to light in 1815 its discourse is indeed tragic, but lacking in the inconsolable depth of Death and the Maiden. However, this doesn’t make it any less of a masterpiece. © SM/Qobuz
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Messes, Passions, Requiems - Verschenen op 31 mei 2019 | Evidence

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice
After 40 years of activities, more than 50 recordings and some 1000 concerts, the Ensemble Gilles Binchois still develop its inquiring generosity. Dominique Vellard and his musicians make all eras become contemporary. Indeed, if the core of its concerns is somewhere between the Middle Ages and the Renaissance, the Ensemble sang everything from Gregorian chant to the religious repertoire of the nineteenth century. Today they guide our ears towards the shores of the Mediterranean, where an intense artistic vitality grew between the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries. After Machaut’s model, the composers attached to the court of Avignon, Barcelona and Cyprus, show ingenuity and imagination: their motets and masses are the ground of rhythmic and melodic finds. To draw a complete portrait the Ensemble Gilles Binchois perform pieces of plain-song and instrumental compositions with two vielles and a medieval mandolin. First milestone of its 40th anniversary, this new record lets the South sun shine thanks to the voices of its singers and the timbre of the ancient strings. © Evidence
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Piano solo - Verschenen op 1 maart 2019 | BIS

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
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Musique symphonique - Verschenen op 2 november 2018 | Chandos

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen Gramophone Editor's Choice - 5 étoiles de Classica
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Concertos pour violon - Verschenen op 16 november 2018 | LSO Live

Hi-Res Booklet Onderscheidingen 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica