Author Topic: "New" Music Log  (Read 81840 times)

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Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #400 on: January 20, 2019, 05:57:01 AM »



Another Hummel, and one less famous than Johann Nepomuk.  When I spied this disc for a few bucks, it was not the composer's name that caught my eye.  Rather, it was the pianist, Markus Bellheim.  His take on Messiaen's Vingt Regards displays a huge sounding, incredibly powerful sonority.  It's not the most moving or effective version I've heard - that would be either Kars or Knapik - but it is spectacular and more enjoyable than versions by some Famous Names.  I figured I might as well hear what this disc was all about.  It's about something sort of different.  Bertold Hummel wrote the works on this disc for children, including his bevy of grandchildren, and his wife.  This is basically a more modern version of Bartok's For Children.  The works are often simple, though not really simplistic, with some having a very 'modern' but not difficult sound. This is not merely a collection of simple, hummable tunes.  There's some there there.  It's not a collection of great masterpieces, but it's a nice enough collection.  Bellheim sounds like he's having fun with what are easy pieces.  Sound for the mid-aughts recording is superb.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2019, 09:00:04 AM by Todd »
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #401 on: January 27, 2019, 07:34:39 AM »



Starting in on this set with the first disc, an assortment of "French Sacred Arias from the 19th Century."  Five composers, plus one of them plus Bach, are included here: Gounod (+Bach), Bizet, Franck, Massenet, and Faure.  The Gounod/Bach setting of Ave Maria is nice but forgettable.  The other works are generally quite beautiful if perhaps slight much of the time.  Sort of surprising is just how good the two Franck pieces sound.  Not at all too heavy or rich (for Franck), they just float by, and are probably the best works on the disc.  The Massenet pieces are dramatic but not overdone, and the sole Faure miniature is predictably lovely.  For a collection of stand-alone pieces and excerpts, this disc works well enough, though I'm not sure I will spin it a lot.  Singers and performers all do good work. 
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #402 on: February 03, 2019, 08:18:34 AM »



From the DHM long box, my first exposure to the music of Johann Rosenmüller, a German composer who was forced to spend decades in Italy due to some indiscretions.  Generally, the music has more of the rhythmic vitality one might expect from Italian or Mediterranean baroque composers than the more serious, meticulous style of Germans of the era, but it does seem like something of a hybrid.  It's spontaneous, but within bounds.  No extroverted excess like with Torres, for instance.  It's enjoyable, but not as enjoyable, for me, as the Torres or Schütz discs heard earlier.  The small ensemble plays with admirable precision and transparency.  The only complaint I have is the use of a countertenor.  I would have preferred a woman sing the part, and though sometimes countertenors blend very well, here, sometimes the voice stands out more than I prefer.  Countertenor fans would likely have no beefs in that regard.  Superb sound.
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #403 on: February 10, 2019, 07:29:36 AM »



From the Jacques Mercier box.  This recording of Salammbô is the first thing I've heard from composer Florent Schmitt.  It's a score for Pierre Marodon's 1925 film adaptation of Gustave Flaubert's novel of ancient Carthaginian goings-on.  If I hadn't read that tidbit, I would have thought this lengthy suite was taken from a stage work of some sort, either an unpopular opera or more likely a lengthy ballet.  The music is obviously set in scenes, meant to evoke or augment imagery of some entertainment for a viewer.  There are vibrant, propulsive sections; more ruminative sections; more eerie sections; and the like.  The music is often sumptuous and even voluptuous, generating a gorgeous and vaguely but safely exotic fin de siècle sound world.  Schmitt had no little expertise in orchestration and the suite is entertaining as all get out, with perhaps one or two spots that might fail to elicit maximum engagement from the listener.  Sound is generally very good, though in tuttis and with the chorus singing at full tilt in the third suite, sound becomes a bit hard and glassy.
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #404 on: Today at 07:28:18 AM »



I'm pretty sure I'd never heard a note of Carl Loewe's music before I listened to this disc.  I was originally going to write something detailed, but as I listened, all of the works sort of blended together and emerged as a collection of perfectly nice lieder that sound like either discarded Schubert sketches or Schubert knock-offs.  The songs certainly sound nice and never sound less than ably crafted, but they don't excite or enthrall.  Of course, the reason the bought this clearance disc was to hear how the young Juliane Banse sounds.  I was unsurprised to learn that she sounds splendid, with all the control and beauty I've heard in every recording I've heard from her.  Thanks to Ms Banse, I can still rate the disc a success. 
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline Papy Oli

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #405 on: Today at 10:52:56 AM »



I'm pretty sure I'd never heard a note of Carl Loewe's music before I listened to this disc.  I was originally going to write something detailed, but as I listened, all of the works sort of blended together and emerged as a collection of perfectly nice lieder that sound like either discarded Schubert sketches or Schubert knock-offs.  The songs certainly sound nice and never sound less than ably crafted, but they don't excite or enthrall.  Of course, the reason the bought this clearance disc was to hear how the young Juliane Banse sounds.  I was unsurprised to learn that she sounds splendid, with all the control and beauty I've heard in every recording I've heard from her.  Thanks to Ms Banse, I can still rate the disc a success.

Todd, I would recommend this CD if you ever feel like giving Carl Loewe's Lieder another try (male singer only):

Olivier

Offline Todd

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Re: "New" Music Log
« Reply #406 on: Today at 12:16:15 PM »
Todd, I would recommend this CD if you ever feel like giving Carl Loewe's Lieder another try (male singer only):




Noted.  Loewe may be - is - worth another shot.  Thanks.
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

 

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