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Classical - Released February 16, 2018 | SOMM Recordings

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Of course it’s not easy to be both a British composer and a contemporary of Britain, whose imposing stature overshadowed many of his peers; it was the case for Edmund Rubbra (1901-1986). Especially as the career of this very dignified man started quite far from music, as he worked in turns in a shoe factory (at the young age of 14) and at a train station while learning counterpoint, harmony, piano – and stenography, just in case. During World War II he joined the army − and it’s in fact wearing a combat uniform that he directed his own Fourth Symphony in 1941, whose first recording is featured in this album. Never full of himself, he did nothing to promote his music, even after numerous institutions placed orders for his music: the BBC, the prestigious Three Choirs Festival and many more: it might in fact explain the relative obscurity, in which his fantastic music has remained so far. Rubbra started writing symphonies late in his life, the First dating back to 1937, even if the following ones were created shortly after; he pursued his symphonic quest until the end and was working on his twelfth – unfinished – when he died. This album features the recording from the creation of his Fourth Symphony in 1941, conducted at the London Proms by the military man in person, as well as the Second from 1937, conducted by Sir Adrian Boult in 1954. The matrices, in mono, were lovingly remastered to give the best possible sound to these magnificent historical testimonies. As for the music, it is just like everything else Rubbra wrote: it cannot be categorised nor dated, but it remains unforgettable in its ineffable beauty. © SM/Qobuz
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Classical - Released April 7, 2017 | SOMM Recordings

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Classical - Released February 1, 2014 | SOMM Recordings