Albums

1200 albums sorted by Date: from newest to oldest
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Classical - Released December 8, 2017 | Aeolus

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
£5.59

Duets - Released December 1, 2017 | Les Indispensables de Diapason

Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Classical - Released November 20, 2017 | La discothèque idéale de Diapason

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Symphonic Music - Released November 17, 2017 | MUNCHNER PHILHARMONIKER GBR

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
The Munich Philharmonic and Sergiu Celibidache share an exceptional legacy. He started his work as principal conductor in 1979 and remained in this position for as long as 17 years. Sergiu Celibidache played an integral part in making the Munich Philharmonic what it is today: an orchestra of worldwide renown. Today the Munich Philharmonic is critically acclaimed internationally with hopelessly sold out concerts in Munich and the world. On their recently launched label MPHIL, the Munich Philharmonic is opening up its vast archives, giving listeners the opportunity to enjoy one of the richest collections of recordings by legendary artists. Because of the Celibidache era and its part in forming the core essence of the orchestra, this first MPHIL physical archive release consists of two recordings under the baton of Maestro Celibidache. The chosen repertoire on the album is Gustav Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder, recorded 30 June 1983 at the Herkulessaal der Residenz, Munich and Richard Strauss’ Tod und Verklärung, recorded on 17 February 1979 also at the Herkulessaal der Residenz, Munich. For a long time, Tod und Verklärung was the most popular of Richard Strauss’s early tone poems. It contains a wide range of memorable motifs subtly differentiated with the result that its music recurs whenever there is mention of death or transfiguration in Strauss’ later output. Together with the innocent tone and positively artificial naïveté of the poems that attracted Gustav Mahler as a composer and prompted him to compose the Kindertotenlieder, this thoughtfully curated pairing creates an altogether intimate character while revealing an astonishing wealth of colours. Mahler’s Kindertotenlieder feature German mezzo-soprano Brigitte Fassbaender, who holds the prestigious title “Kammersängerin” from the Bavarian State Opera and the Vienna State Opera.
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Trios - Released November 17, 2017 | Myrios Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
An unusual and yet particularly clever juxtaposition can be found on this album, which consists in mirroring Schumann’s 1853 Märchenerzählungen (Tales, implicitly for children) for viola, clarinet and piano – as well as, still in the realm of fairy tales, Fantasiestücke (Fantasy Pieces) for clarinet and piano and then Märchenbilder (Fairy Tale Pictures) for viola and piano – and Jörg Widmann’s Es war einmal... Fünf Stücke im Märchenton (Once Upon a Time – Five Pieces in a Fairy Tale Tone). While being a contemporary, even a modernist artist, Widmann was indeed largely inspired by Schumann’s Märchenerzählungen, his work sprinkling with reminiscences, allusions and barely disguised quotes, superimposed to today’s language – so much that, at some point, one could be led to believe both tracks were playing at the same time, Schumann’s and Widmann’s! Ever since the first great creators, the art of “recycling”, reusing and rewriting is one of the main driving forces behind artistic creation; in fact Widmann is only following this proven model. Tabea Zimmermann on viola, Dénes Várjon on piano and on clarinet, no other than the composer himself: Widmann of course, not Schumann who, as everyone knows, doesn’t play the clarinet. © SM/Qobuz
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Secular Vocal Music - Released November 10, 2017 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Jazz
This project originated, Sabine Devieilhe says, from her desire to tackle Lakmé. In fact, Delibes was able to compose for her heroine some of the most memorable pages for coloratura soprano, starting with the hugely famous "air des clochettes" [Bell Song]. And as Western ears at the time were eager for musical and poetic voyages, and sensations from far-off lands, we find these same Oriental fantasies with Maurice Delage, who himself went on a grand tour of India, where he found modal colours, but also in Madame Chrysanthème by Messager or Rossignol by Stravinsky, to say nothing of the Egypt of Thaïs as portrayed by Anatole France and Massenet. Sabine Devieilhe, who won the "Lyrical revelation" prize at Victoires de la musique classique in 2013 before winning "Lyrical artist of the year" at the same ceremony – certainly not an unfair judgement of this particular artist – started her recording career with recordings of Rameau, Bach and Mozart, before launching into the lyrical repertoire from more recent years… And with great success! © SM/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released October 27, 2017 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
A voice, a lute, a sigh. Nothing could be simpler and more immemorial. This expression of sentiments and emotions, of the intermittencies of the heart and the shadows of the soul, is of course as old as the world. Yet it was truly a reconquest of the Renaissance. With Caccini, the ‘new music’ at once found a miraculous melodist. He composed a Euridice, performed in 1602, two years after Jacopo Peri’s setting and five years before Monteverdi’s Orfeo. The Renaissance did not know opera, but long secreted that genre soon to be born. And it is brand-new opera that opens and closes this recording, through the voice of its first visionary, Claudio Monteverdi. His Lamento d’Arianna, the centrepiece of a lost work, expresses sorrow, regrets, revolt through the very music of the Italian language, here brought to white heat. The ‘new music’ spread throughout Italy: Merula in Cremona, Falconieri in Naples, and Barbara Strozzi, the most famous woman composer of the age, in Venice. The Italian soprano Roberta Mameli is a great lover of this music, which she performs with an outstanding feeling for words and drama. Luca Pianca offers her his artistry and his great experience. © Alpha Classics
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Chamber Music - Released October 26, 2017 | Les Indispensables de Diapason

Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Classical - Released October 13, 2017 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
For true fans of Christian Ferras (1933-1982), this box set of recordings (mono and stereo) made between 1957 and 1962 is an absolute treasure chest. In the company of his good friend Pierre Barbizet, Georges Prêtre, Malcolm Sargent, Menuhin for Bach's Double and several other big names of her era, this follower of George Enesco offers up a superb selection of great concertos and great sonatas, from before the famous recordings with Karajan that covered of the lion's share of the Ferras concert repertoire. Ferras had a searing career – these recordings were made by a man aged 24 to 29 years old! His glory years ran until the end of the 1960s, before meeting with an inexorable descent into the hell of alcoholism and depression (which would drive away the big labels, the orchestras and the public) – a descent which he would end with a ten-storey fall from his Parisian apartment on 14 September 1982. The world had lost one of the greatest violinists of his time, but his legend would never die. Naturally, all these recordings have been subject to a most careful remastering, based on the original matrices. © SM/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released October 13, 2017 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique
Bach (Johann Sebastian, that is) or not Bach? This is the question that the violinist Amandine Beyer and the ensemble Gli Incogniti asked themselves by seizing a handful of works long thought to be from the Kantor and that we now know to be from other composers—known, identified or not. Thus, the Sonata BWV 1024 may have “ended up” in Bach’s repertoire because a musicologist knew how to use the right scientific arguments (paper, copyists, geographical and historical contexts) to achieve his goal. The style of the composition, which admittedly is a bit reminiscent of Bach, cannot however quite fall in line with the musician’s writing style. Therefore, in order to avoid the sonata disappearing back into anonymity, it has now been attributed to Pisendel, rightly or wrongly. The Trio BWV 1036 is from Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach—we were always quite sure of that, even if some less scrupulous releases have omitted the first name… The Trio BWV 1037 seems to be from Goldberg (the one from the Variations). The Suite in A major BWV 1025 is of somewhat ambiguous paternity, but it’s actually an arrangement Bach created for violin and harpsichord using the Suite SC 47 for lute that his friend and colleague Silvius Leopold Weiss composed. These are a few works that, after long being in the paradise of being attributed to Bach, are now in the hell of the “fake”, even if it’s not the fault of the composers that wrote them! What a pity… © SM/Qobuz
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Secular Vocal Music - Released October 13, 2017 | SWR Classic

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Chamber Music - Released October 13, 2017 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
Following a first recording on Alpha devoted to Brahms which garnered much praise – ‘real duo playing’ said Gramophone, while Classica discerned ‘shared music making . . . a world full of nuances and subtlety, boundless sonic imagination (Marie-Elisabeth Hecker), playing of rare intelligence (Martin Helmchen)’ and awarded the disc a ‘Choc’ – the duo is reunited. Its new programme features two summits of chamber music: Schubert’s famous Arpeggione Sonata – named after a now obsolete instrument that was a cross between the guitar and the cello – and his no less celebrated Trio no.2 D929, which achieved even greater popularity thanks to Stanley Kubrick’s film Barry Lyndon. In the latter, the duo is joined by an eminent musician with whom they enjoy playing, Antje Weithaas, ‘one of the great violinists of our time’ (Fonoforum) and also one of the teachers most sought after by the young generation. For example, she taught Tobias Feldmann, the young violinist recently signed by Alpha. © Alpha Classics
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Classical - Released October 6, 2017 | CPO

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
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Masses, Passions, Requiems - Released October 6, 2017 | SDG

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Le Choix de France Musique - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Jazz
So much can be said about this new recording featuring among others − but as the pièce de résistance − Bach’s Magnificat, performed by John Eliot Gardiner, that we simply don’t know where to start! In 1983 – already 35 years ago! – Gardiner gave his first vision of Magnificat BWV 234 in D major; here the version in question is the BWV 234a in E flat major, the original and initial version, the – extended – one Bach wrote as soon as 1723 while the BWV 234 version (more often played nowadays) only arose from adjustments made ten years later. Of course one can debate on the advantages of one over the other but for this recording, Gardiner put emphasis on the brilliance, vibrancy and stunning virtuosity imposed by the E-flat major tone and vigorous tempi, in other words: undeniably modern! Magnificat is preceded by the Mass in F major, one of Bach’s four Lutheran masses, proper gems that are too rarely performed. It’s worth noting that most movements are recycled from previous cantatas, but with thorough rewrites of course! You’ll also find one of Gardiner’s favourite cantatas, Süßer Trost, mein Jesus kömmt (Sweet comfort, my Jesus comes), BWV 151, composed for the Christmas period. With his English Baroque Soloists, his Monteverdi Choir and a broad group of soloists (the alto parts are given to a male voice, it’s worth mentioning in case… it’s not your cup of tea), Gardiner is once again standing on top of a great success.
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Symphonic Music - Released October 6, 2017 | Chandos

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or
Vaughan Williams’ seventh symphony (1951), Sinfonia Antartica, reuses numerous materials from the stunning piece the composer wrote in 1948 for the film Scott of the Antarctic. Therefore none will be surprised by the extraordinarily visual orchestration and theme, which any listener – even ignoring the title or cinematographic influence – will immediately associate with vast windy flatlands, scintillating icy lights, Antarctica in all its splendour – and dangers, as Scott’s expedition ended tragically, that’s the least one can say. As a complement to the programme, the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra (where they are used to the great cold!) and Andrew Davis provide us with Vaughan Williams’s Concerto For Two Pianos: initially created in 1933 for a single piano, the work was adapted to two pianos in 1946 in light of the tremendous difficult piano part, and the composer also took the opportunity to change a few sections. Here it is performed by two Canadians, Louis Lortie and Hélène Mercier. And finally you’ll discover the Four Last Songs sung by Roderick Williams, a kind of Vaughanwilliamsian equivalent to Strauss’ own Four Last Songs, even though Vaughan Williams’ four songs were first orchestrated after his death, by Anthony Payne in 2013 – scrupulously following the composer’s orchestral habits. A beautiful musical testament, created during the last few months of his life. © SM/Qobuz