Albums

£7.99

Ballets - Released November 30, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Booklet
It was an excellent idea to bring together the Suite from Rimski-Korsakov's Golden Cockeral with the complete ballet The Firebird by Stravinsky on one single album. We specify "complete ballet" because he often records one of the three suites that were later established for the concert hall rather than for the ballet. The idea is brilliant in that it highlights the heavy influence of Rimsky-Korsakov on the young Stravinsky, whose Firebird logically pursues the magical orchestral sounds developed by Rimsky-Korsakov. Not to mention that The Golden Cockeral> precedes The Firebird only by one year, 1909 for the first, 1910 for the latter. And suddenly, the old master appears in all his mind-blowing modernity! The Royal Liverpool Philharmonic is here under the precise and sharp direction of Vasily Petrenko, who underlines all the subtleties of both scores. © SM/Qobuz
£3.60

Classical - Released November 30, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Booklet
Looking at it closely, Vaughan Williams' first symphony, A Sea Symphony, is his first major work; the composer, who was never in a hurry, was already thirty-six years old when he finished it, even though the writing process had taken him a good half a dozen years. Never in a hurry indeed... But this first great work was a masterpiece that propelled Vaughan Williams to the forefront of the musical world in that year of 1910, a position that he would never leave again. Quite the contrary in fact: masterpiece after masterpiece followed until the end of his life. His Symphony No.1 is the longest of his symphonies; there are four movements in which the choir appears like a soloist from start to finish alongside two real vocal soloists. The style is very modern - not too much in the wake of a Debussy, but truly at the basis of a complete renewal of English music in which Elgar also participated and which served as a foundation, for example, for Britten a few decades later. The album, which features the excellent conductor Andrew Manze at the head of the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, closes with one of the composer's most famous works, The Lark Ascending for solo violin (James Ehnes here) and orchestra. It is a true wonder of poetry and invention. The composer limits the orchestra to strings and a few woodwinds, plus a triangle that plays a total of sixteen notes - what an invention! © SM/Qobuz
£6.54
£4.32

Classical - Released September 21, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
Nearly all the pieces on this album were first performed and widely promoted by the Latvian violinist Gidon Kremer, one of them – Tabula rasa (1977) – being specifically written with his artistry in mind. They are also all products of what Arvo Pärt himself describes as a ‘tintinnabuli’ style, developed by the composer in the 1970s through studying medieval church music. As Pärt has explained: “I have discovered that it is enough when a single note is beautifully played. This one note, or a silent beat, or a moment of silence, comforts me. I work with very few elements – with one voice, two voices. I build with primitive materials – with the triad, with one specific tonality. The three notes of a triad are like bells and that is why I call it tintinnabulation.” Tabula rasa and Fratres, both composed in 1977, effectively established Pärt’s international reputation. Tabula rasa is effectively a concerto for two violins with string orchestra and a prepared piano, the latter instrument creating explicitly bell-like sonorities in the work’s slow second movement. Fratres, since its first performance by the Estonian ensemble of early music, Hortus Musicus, has been arranged for various instrumental combinations. The version heard here is the composer’s own, written in 1991 for solo violin, strings and percussion (involving claves and bass drum or tom-tom). Bach has long been an important influence in Pärt’s music, as is evident in his Passacaglia, composed in 2003, and in Darf ich... (May I…) originally composed in 1995 and dedicated to Yehudi Menuhin; Pärt subsequently revised the work in 1999, Kremer giving the premiere of this revised version with his ensemble, Kremerata Baltica. Spiegel im Spiegel, composed in 1978, is one of Pärt’s simplest compositions, a violin unhurriedly playing a mostly stepwise melody over a steadily arpeggiating piano part. © Onyx Classics
£7.63
£5.04

Classical - Released September 21, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
The music on this Onyx release wasn't conceived as a single presentation: the three works were recorded in Seattle, Detroit, and Monmouth (U.K.), over a period spanning almost a year and a half, and there are two violin concertos, performed respectively with the Seattle and Detroit Symphonies, and a programmatic violin-and-piano piece. Yet Canada's James Ehnes is one of the hottest violinists on the planet, and it's hard to fault Onyx for grouping three works that have in common extremely fluent virtuoso writing that displays his talents to the hilt. Indeed, the album garnered a pair of Grammy award nominations, for Ehnes for Best Classical Instrumental Solo, and for Aaron Jay Kernis for Best Contemporary Classical Composition, and won both categories. The three works are attractively varied, from the straight neo-Romanticism of film composer James Newton Howard (who scored, among other works, My Best Friend's Wedding) to the general 20th century idiom of the prolific Kernis, to the Stream of Limelight of British composer Bramwell Tovey, where Ehnes is joined by pianist Andrew Armstrong. To these ears, the last is the most distinctive of the three works, which break no new ground but would in all cases be thrilling to hear played by Ehnes in person. Onyx engineers have knitted the various sound sources together reasonably effectively, and the album is a genuine crowd-pleaser from start to finish.
£5.76

Classical - Released May 18, 2018 | Onyx Classics

£11.99
£7.99

Classical - Released April 20, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
£8.72
£5.76

Concertos - Released April 20, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res
£9.81
£6.48

Classical - Released April 20, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res
£7.63
£5.04

Chamber Music - Released March 23, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
£8.72
£5.76

Symphonic Music - Released March 23, 2018 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
£5.45
£3.60

Concertos - Released December 8, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
£6.54
£4.32

Concertos - Released October 20, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
£11.99
£7.99

Classical - Released October 20, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res Booklet
£11.99
£7.99

Classical - Released May 26, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res
£11.99
£7.99

Classical - Released April 21, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res
£11.99
£7.99

Classical - Released April 7, 2017 | Onyx Classics

Hi-Res
£5.76

Symphonic Music - Released March 24, 2017 | Onyx Classics

£4.32

Chamber Music - Released February 24, 2017 | Onyx Classics

£5.04

Symphonic Music - Released February 24, 2017 | Onyx Classics

£11.99

Concertos - Released January 20, 2017 | Onyx Classics