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1  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Ongoing CPO projects. on: Today at 03:38:27 pm
There's often a bit of grumbling when a recording label brings out another recorded cycle of a less well known composer that has already been done. In this case,the Plovdiv performances,and recording quality,were so sub-standard I don't think anyone should be complaining this new one from Cpo. I think the Cpo recording of Louis Glass' third symphony,and the Suite that accompanies it,were quite a revelation for me. It has certainly provided me with allot of pleasure. As for further dulicate cycles of lesser known composers. If I had a recording label the Tournemire symphonies would definitely be high on my list. Although,if I did have a recording label (perchance to dream?!! Grin) composers and works that haven't been recorded would be a priority. I'd still need funding,though!! I couldn't fund my complete recordings of Holbrooke's The Cauldron of Annwn cycle,Queen Mab,Apollo and the Seaman and,Dundonnell would be pleased to hear,a Peter Racine Fricker cycle,on hot air,could I?!!

 Huh Roll Eyes Grin
2  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Joseph Holbrooke from CPO on: June 21, 2017, 06:52:07 pm
I'm 100% sure that offence was neither meant nor taken. Holbrooke is not everybody's cup of tea, but he's certainly mine partly because of my fascination with his personality and the maverick nature of his inspirational sources. At his best, in works like Ulalume, The Raven and The Bells, he achieves a distinct and remarkably painterly musicality...


I agree with all of Albion's reasons for liking Holbrooke. In my case,his connections with Wales,and the fact that I've always been fascinated by Welsh legends,folklore and mythology. I've also read The Mabinogion (Haven't we all?!! Grin) the collection of medieval Welsh manuscripts from which Lord Howard de Walden derived his long poem,and the libretto's for Holbrooke's The Cauldron of Annwn cycle. I've liked his music ever since I heard that Symposium cd of recordings of Holbrooke's music made in the thirties,and the Marco Polo cd's of his orchestral works that followed. I also still have the very nice letter I received from Holbrooke's son,Gwydion Brooke,and the Lp of Holbrooke's Chamber music (his own label) he sent to me,in response to my letter enthusing about his father's music.
Indeed! No offence was taken. I am sorry if my reponse to Dundonnell's post sounded a bit tetchy. The problem is,we Holbrooke 'groupies' need to hear just about every single thing he composed (okay,maybe not everything?!! Grin). I do like his use of the brass,though,and I can't help wondering what his brand band pieces sound like. Whether his Fifth Symphony is actually worth recording is another matter,of course! Just curious!! Roll Eyes Grin
3  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Ongoing CPO projects. on: June 20, 2017, 04:37:41 pm
I can fully appreciate your delight at seeing another instalment in CPO's Louis Glass series Smiley You have been expressing your hopes that there would be another such release for some time on this forum Grin Grin

I am also pleased to note the forthcoming further release of music by von Hausseger. At the same time this one rather puzzles me. The last von Hausseger cd appeared for sale in the UK only two months ago (April). Such a "delay" in following up one cd by another of the same composer's music is, as far as I can recall, unprecedented Grin, what about another instalment in the Johann Nepomuk David series Huh
Not following the von Hausegger series that closely,I didn't realise that this was a vol 3!!!! Does this mean I can expect a third cd in the Louis Glass series in mid to late August?!! Shocked Grin Can't wait (Erm,I wouldn't have to,really! Grin)
4  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Ongoing CPO projects. on: June 20, 2017, 02:31:30 pm
Fantastic news! Smiley The Cpo recording of the third symphony revealed a lovely,romantic,tuneful symphony in all it's glory. The Suite was,imho,arguably even finer. I would have liked to hear what they could do with one of the other symphonies really,because we all know (or some of us,anyway?) how good the Fifth is already. Still,musn't grumble,as they say;and I can see the reasoning here.Incidentally,according to the paper inlay,the third Symphony was recorded in September 2009. The actual cd was released in 2014.

The Hausegger is not currently on my 'wish' list;but I bought the cd of his Natursymphonie a few months ago,and after a few listens,I do think it is quite a find. Is anyone here planning to order this,follow-up,release,I wonder?
5  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Joseph Holbrooke from CPO on: June 19, 2017, 04:23:17 pm
That doesn't mean that other people might not want to hear them! I'm not a big fan of brass band music,but Holbrooke use of the brass section of the orchestra is one of the things that have always attracted me to his music. I have read,here I think (I need to go back through the posts) that the Fifth Symphony is more like a suite;but that doesn't mean it isn't necessarily worth listening to. I can think of some,so,called symphonies that are actually more like suites,but they are still very enjoyable. Of course,there are examples of symphonies,that are definitely symphonies,but are merely long winded and outstay their welcome.
I have to say my favourite music for brass band;and the examples I go back to more than any,are those suites by Holst. I'd be surprised if even Dundonnell doesn't enjoy them?!!

By the way,Gareth Vaughan will be pleased to know that I have just spent three days listening to every Holbrooke cd,off-air broadcast of a major Holbrooke work and cd with Holbrooke on it,in my collection. I thought even I would throw in the towel at some point;but to my astonishment I enjoyed every one of them!!
6  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Joseph Holbrooke from CPO on: June 18, 2017, 12:42:33 am
Yes,he even seems to have kept changing the dedicatees of the individual variations that make up the Auld lang Syne Variations. Havergal Brian,the dedicatee of the Fourteenth (the booklet,unless it's my glasses Roll Eyes Grin,refers to it as the Fourth!) being replaced,later on,by Dan Godfrey.....and that's just one example! I wonder why? I know Holbrooke was a bit of a difficult character (nobody's perfect,mind!) but I thought Holbrooke and Brian were on friendly terms?!
7  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Joseph Holbrooke from CPO on: June 17, 2017, 12:20:34 am
Listening to this cd again has prompted a whole day of Holbrooke orchestral cds;or what few there are of them! Still,at least there are some,now;so I mustn't grumble!
One Symphony I would dearly love to hear,is his Fifth Symphony "Wild Wales". Not just because of it's seductive subtitle (I live in Wales!),but also because one of the things I particularly like about Holbrooke is his sonorous use of the brass section of the orchestra;and the Fifth symphony is for.......wait for it.........brass band!! I know that some of Holbrooke's symphonies (and some other compositions) have gone missing. Hopefully,his Fifth symphony is not one of them?!!

NB: Just looked at the Wikipedia entry for this symphony under brass band. Also titled "Old Wales,also styled Symphony No 8". Confusing?!! Roll Eyes Undecided Grin
8  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Joseph Holbrooke from CPO on: June 16, 2017, 07:24:57 pm
After reading a quite enthusiastic review (not Musicweb) I decided to give this another spin. I didn't realise Holbrooke had taken a leaf out of Elgar's book. (Okay,I didn't read the booklet!)  Each Variation being a musical sketch  of a close friend or acquaintance. The Variation 14, HB Allegro marchia depicting Havergal Brian! Although Havergal Brian was later replaced by DG (Dan Godfrey)! I'm beginning to enjoy this now after a few listens. Holbrooke's variations are hardly a match for Elgar's;but maybe they aren't meant to be? This is more like well crafted light music. I find Holbrooke's scoring colourful and I like parts of it very much. I also find the ,so called,"Grasshopper" Violin Concerto growing on me,too. I find that leaping motif quite delightful. It really draws me in,and Holbrooke's scoring is at it's best here. I think it's a lovely piece. The slow movement is a cracker,imho.Structurally,it also strikes me as one of his most accomplished and effective pieces.
The cd finishes off with one of his Poe (Edgar Allan! Grin) inspired compositions. This is a very Gothic sounding piece. You can practically hear the rustling curtain and the Raven tapping on the window pane,croaking,"Nevermore"!
This has taken,as I said,a few listens;but the music on this cd has really grown on me. I am really looking forward to the forthcoming Cpo cd of the third symphony and it's companions. I hope it won't be too long?!! I trust Cpo will find another appropriate painting to adorn the front. The choices so far have been excellent,as far as I'm concerned. I also hope the next cd won't be the last!! Angry Sad Grin

9  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Roger Sacheverell Coke, 1912-1972 on: June 14, 2017, 02:07:44 pm
I finally found the off air recording I made,of the Coke Piano concerto,on my pc. I made a cd-r of this last night,coupling it with a paid download I've had for ages,and not listened to,of the Conifer recording of Bridge's Phantasm. I had an idea it might be a suitable fill-up (albeit the Bridge is a little more than a fill-up!). I had a listen through some of it last night. Alas! It was time for bed!! Sad On this hearing,however,I have to say that,this time around,I DID enjoy what I was hearing! Coke's writing reminds me allot of those old Golden age Hollywood melodramas. And I don't mean that in a disparaging way! Hangover Square is one example that springs to mind,where the doomed,frustrated composer continues to perform his concerto even as a fire engulfs the concert hall around him. (The audience,and orchestra,very sensibly,fleeing the inferno around them). If you like slightly ott,no holds barred,late romantic piano concertos,or concertante style works,this strikes me as rather good fun. British Piano concertos tend to be a little staid in this respect (although there are exceptions;Bax's Winter Legends being one example) so something a little more heart on sleeve and unbuttoned,strikes me as a welcome diversion. Perhaps the only vital ingredient missing being that hummable tune that goes around in your head after you finish listening! I understand the Hyperion cd will be released before long. I think this will be a pre-order,as I will now want to hear the remainder!! Grin Smiley
10  Little-known music of all eras / Discussion of obscure composers / Re: Malcolm Lipkin (1932-2017) has died on: June 08, 2017, 12:39:43 pm
I've got to agree with Gauk here! Roll Eyes Grin Why not?!! About time someone issued a recording of his Wine Symphony,too! Sad
11  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: George Antheil Symphonic series on Chandos on: May 12, 2017, 06:48:06 pm
So - imagine you have won the lottery and have lots of cash in hand. You can go to Chandos and order up one complete symphony cycle. They have Martyn Brabbins and the BBCSSO lined up and ready to go. Who will you pick? Piston, Diamond and Holbrooke have all been mentioned, but you have to settle on one. I'm sure there are other names worthy of consideration - what about Butterworth, for instance?
I'd love some more Holbrooke. Apollo and the Seaman. I would also like to hear his Symphony No.5 in E flat, Wild Wales,because I live there!! But i'm not sure that his symphonies really do deserve a complete cycle. Not that I'm against the idea of more being recorded,but I don't think the symphony was really his forte,and this would be my dosh!! Also,I gather some of them are lost!! Sad I would really like a top notch Charles Tournemire symphony cycle. The available recordings are either terrible or quite good. I feel they are interesting works and he has his own sound world. It is a shame that such an ambitious French symphony cycle doesn't get more attention. I'm not convinced by all of them;but even the weakest are intriguing. After that I would love a complete Lev Knipper symphony cycle. Actually,I'm joking!! Grin As Dundonnell observes,Brabbins tends to specialise in British music so I would probably pay for a Fricker cycle! I might also pay for a Louis Glass symphony cycle,as Cpo are taking so long......but as soon as the cycle appeared sods law states that they'd just happen to resume theirs!! Roll Eyes Grin
12  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: George Antheil Symphonic series on Chandos on: May 10, 2017, 10:50:37 am
I think Antheil is a very interesting composer and I find some of his music quite fascinating. That said, the reason why his best symphonies are so interesting to people like me,who enjoy them,is because of the sheer fecundity of his imagination and brilliant ear for colourful,imaginative orchestration. In that respect it is no surprise that he was a successful film composer. I find some of his symphonies quite extraordinary for their vivid almost hallucinogenic orchestration. I would single out No's 1 & 6,in particular. I also enjoy his collage like approach to composition. Like A musical magpie incorporating allusions to other composers and,above all,his inventive assimilation of popular idioms and styles. In this respects I think Antheil is a fascinating and in his own way very original composer,and I think his music is fully deserving of more attention. On a more negative level,I would not regard him as a major symphonist because of his poor sense of structure. His collage like approach to the symphony almost works for me. He's almost like an American version of Brian in the way that he builds up his music through a process of allusion and his ideas are usually very good. He's almost like a conjurer in this sense. Making a rabbit appear magically from a hat;but you know it's not really the way it looks. It's all done by sleight of hand. In that sense he's not a good symphonist. But he's not really bad either;because he's so good at what he does. I could go so far as to class him as a sort of musical conjurer. Maybe,even to people like me,who enjoy his music,he's not really quite as good as he seems! More a David Copperfield,than a bad boy of American music. As to the Chandos series. I quite like the artwork and you'll get that big,boomy,somewhat reverberant ( somewhat superficially) spectacular Chandos sound. Apart from that,I can't think of one reason why I would want to invest in this when the Cpo cycle is so categorically superb. Much as I enjoy Antheil,I think this new cycle from Chandos is a complete waste of time,money,materials,power;and if I were to buy it,space as well! Roll Eyes Grin In this respect I agree with Dundonnell and Latvian. We've had totally unecessary duplication of a widely praised and totally satisfactory Atterberg cycle,duplications of Raff symphonies,already available in first rate recordings from Tudor,Vaughan Williams recordings which are unlikely to ever replace classic recordings in the publics affections,and I can confidently predict never will.......I could go on. Luckily,for everyone else,I won't!! Chandos certainly won't be getting a penny of my money until they wise up!! If they wanted to record a cycle of something that has already been recorded,I would have preferred to have seen a cycle of Tournemire symphonies. These have had some adequate recordings,and some really lousy recordings;and I have not quite made my mind up about the true value of some of them;but there is enough to arouse my interest and make me want to explore these ambitious scores via some really first rate recordings. He certainly has his own sound world and Timpani don't seem to be interested,so far. And there is so much more. We all have composers in mind,that we would like to see recorded. I find it difficult to believe that some of Piston's symphonies,for example,are only available in ancient old recordings. The absence of a really good modern recording of Harris' Fifth Symphony,one of his best symphonies,imho,is a shame. A Fricker cycle would be fantastic. Imagine hearing his best scores in state of the art digital sound? Even some Holbrooke would be preferable to this Antheil nonsense!! Grin Are there really hundreds of Antheil groupies waiting to pounce on this new recording? If they can have a slice of the pie,why not us Holbrookeians? Holbrooke was keen on popular music,too!! Grin

NB: I understand Gauk's point;but it does make you wonder what Chandos will be duplicating next? Yes,it may help to increase interest in this very worthwhile and entertaining composer;but
      the overriding impression I get out of is a record label that has run out of new ideas. It all feels a bit like the recording industry equivalent of those bbc remakes of old situation comedies.
13  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Future Dutton releases? on: May 09, 2017, 02:47:15 pm
At least your music teacher had heard of him! Smiley Grin
14  Little-known music of all eras / Broadcast videos / Re: Karol Szymanowski - Third Symphony opus 27 (1916) on: May 09, 2017, 12:55:54 pm
Haven't heard it for years. I remember I had the Dorati Lp of the Second and third when I was a youngster!
15  Little-known music of all eras / New recordings / Re: Future Dutton releases? on: May 06, 2017, 12:33:46 pm
A Havergal Brian lottery! What a fun idea!! I'm actually really looking forward to what Brabbins will do with it. The whole cd program strikes me as a very interesting selection. And there I was banging on about them doing No 3,or 7,next? I didn't think of anything like this?!! Shocked
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