Albums

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Folk/Americana - Released February 15, 2019 | Verve Forecast

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Qobuzissime
The American dream is an inexhaustible subject. It is approached head-on, sideways, from behind, above and below. It is the ultimate fuel for hordes of songwriters; even when they weren’t even born in America. As is the case for J.S. Ondara. This young Kenyan, who his label calls "the link between Tracy Chapman and Michael Kiwanuka" (an easy claim but not wrong), went there to try his luck. In 2013, Ondara dropped anchor at his aunt's house in Minneapolis. Having only previously known his native Nairobi, the musician took his songs into bars, clubs and even out onto the street, equipped with only his voice and a simple acoustic guitar, perhaps in the hope of becoming a third millennium Bob Dylan. The Dylan of The Freewheelin', his favourite record; Springsteen's Nebraska also being one of his top picks... But to limit himself to cloning those giants wouldn’t be very interesting. And Tales of America avoids that. First of all, J.S. Ondara has his own voice. His plaintive tone is a little androgynous and makes him truly unique. On the instrumental side, he adds some more daring flavours with the help of the great Andrew Bird, Griffin Goldsmith from Dawes and Joey Ryan from the Milk Carton Kids duo. In a divided America and a crisis-riddled world, J. S. Ondara's songs are more than just bandages, they’re powerful balms that penetrate the skin and warm the heart. This is a Qobuzissime that we needed... © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Theatre Music - Released September 10, 2018 | Channel Classics Records

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With one of the very best orchestras in the world, the Budapest Festival Orchestra, one of today’s most fascinating conductor, Iván Fischer, offers one of the most beautiful recent interpretations of Mendelssohn’s integral A Midsummer Night's Dream. In other words: first the Overture, the phenomenal stroke of genius of a seventeen-year-old – one can only wonder where he discovered all of these orchestral inventions, as in 1826, templates were still rare and Berlioz had yet to enter the musical scene. Afterwards, the remaining pieces were composed sixteen years later for the theatrical presentation of Shakespeare’s play with musical interludes: thirteen very diverse pieces, ranging from the fabulous Scherzo − a masterpiece of finesse and orchestral invention – to delicious singing moments, as well as a pre-Mahler funeral march (reminiscent of Frère Jacques from Mahler’s Symphony No. 1), the overly well-known wedding march, the grotesque dance, and many more. There is little doubt that this is, if not Mendelssohn’s greatest masterpiece, at least one of his absolute pinnacle works. Presented here in a truly irresistible interpretation. © SM/Qobuz
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Chamber Music - Released May 25, 2018 | Alpha

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It was when he heard a harpsichordist playing for the students at the university in his home town of Angers that Justin Taylor first discovered this instrument and its intriguing sound. He split his time between the piano and a harpsichord apprenticeship that he took with Olivier Beaumont and Blandine Rannou, also following masterclasses from Skip Sempé and Pierre Hantaï. What followed was a modern fairytale. The young man made furious progress, swiftly becoming a poster boy for the French harpsichord, winning the Bruges Competition and being named the musical "Revelation" of 2017, at the age of 23. A first album, dedicated to the Family Forqueray (Alpha, Qobuzissime) was showered in plaudits and soon followed by a number of concerts at prestigious festivals, which seem not to have remotely changed this young Franco-American. For his second project with Alpha Classics, Justin Taylor deftly blends Scarlatti with Ligeti, a composer he knows well, having played his formidable Continuum at the admission competition for the Conservatoire de Paris (CNSMD). In this new album, Scarlatti's harmonic daring joins a György Ligeti fascinated by the work of his distant Neapolitan colleague. The result is a real firework, lit and aimed by ten fingers which are as intelligent as they are fiendish – this artist is absolutely one to watch. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released September 22, 2017 | Alpha

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Whether singing, conducting, dancing or acting, the Canadian soprano Barbara Hannigan is a source of fascination. Alpha Classics is proud to enter her world today and to present in 2017 her very first album as singer and conductor: with the Amsterdambased orchestra Ludwig, of which she is associate artist, Barbara Hannigan has devised a programme including Berg’s Lulu Suite and Gershwin’s Girl Crazy in a Suite newly arranged by the multiaward-winning American composer Bill Elliott. To complement these two pieces, she has recorded Berio’s spectacular Sequenza III for solo voice. An outstanding soprano, a distinguished interpreter of the music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, an all-round artist who creates a sensation on concert platforms and in opera houses throughout the world, Barbara Hannigan has enriched her palette over the past few years by devoting a portion of her activities to conducting. © Alpha Classics
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Folk/Americana - Released January 1, 1968 | Craft Recordings

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama