Best of 2012
2012 has given us a wealth of new music.
2012 marked the year Linn released the first in the Mozart opera series from Classical Opera and launch the complete Corelli series with The Avison Ensemble. Claire Martin jetted off to New York to record an album with pianist extraordinaire Kenny Barron and we welcomed new signings Boston Baroque, Emily Barker and Ensemble Marsyas. We have also been able to expand our Studio Master download catalogue, which now numbers over 600, with Universal and its family of labels added to our digital partners bringing artists such as The Rolling Stones, Mark Knopfler and Mumford & Sons to linnrecords.com.
With so many great recordings to choose from we have found it very hard to pick our 'best of' list this year, but these are the albums we have finally (after a LOT of deliberation!) settled upon:
1 Bob Marley - Legend (Island)
The best selling reggae album of all-time and one of Rolling Stone's '50 Greatest Albums of All Time'. A compilation where you may recognise more songs than you'd first expect. With so many great tracks to choose from, there is no shortage of familiar and timeless reggae numbers.
'The beauty and simplicity of Marley's music [is] captured particularly well here.' AllMusic.com
2 Claire Martin & Kenny Barron - Too Much in Love to Care (Linn)
‘Too Much in Love to Care' is a collection of classic romantic songs and beautiful ballads from The Great American Songbook with many of the tracks recorded in just one take.
'...gorgeous tone, faultless pitch, exquisite phrasing...' Jazzwise
3 Richard Tunnicliffe - J.S. Bach Cello Suites (Linn)
Performing Bach's iconic suites has become a rite of passage for many cellists, but Richard Tunnicliffe's extensive experience and virtuosity allowed him to create a recording that highlights the distinct personality and individuality of each movement.
'Tunnicliffe's performances are simply magnificent.' SA-CD.net
4 Robin Ticciati / Scottish Chamber Orchestra - Berlioz: Symphonie Fantastique (Linn)
Named one of the top ten young ‘conductors on the verge of greatness' by Gramophone Magazine, Robin is the perfect conductor to bring out the deep colours and emotions of Berlioz's Symphonie Fantastique.
Named 'CD of the Week' Classic FM Radio, 'Classical CD of the Week' Sunday Times, Critics' Choice 'Sound of 2012' The Independent, 'Record of the Month' Hi-Fi News and 'Disc of the Week' BBC Radio 3 'CD Review'.
5 Melody Gardot - The Absence (Universal)
'The Absence' is a stunning 11-track culmination of Melody's year-long globetrotting experiences. From the deserts of Morocco to the beaches of Brazil, ‘The Absence' pulses to the hypnotic rhythms of Fado, Tango and Samba.
'A late-night, gipsy travelogue spiced with world music influences.' The Telegraph
6 Daniel Barenboim - Beethoven For All - Symphonies 1-9 (Decca)
This five-disc boxed set features revelatory readings of all nine of Beethoven's symphonies from the inspirational West-Eastern Divan Orchestra under their thrilling conductor, Daniel Barenboim.
‘Daniel Barenboim is not merely one of the greatest all-round musicians alive - he is one of the few great men of our time.' The Guardian
7 George Harrison - Early Takes Volume 1 (Universal)
Early Takes Volume 1 is a pivotal companion piece to Martin Scorsese's stunning critically acclaimed documentary on the life of George Harrison, "Living in the Material World".
'There's a simplicity about these previously unreleased demos that's beguiling, allowing the sweeter side of Harrison to shine unencumbered by studio blandishments.' The Independent
8 Boston Baroque - Haydn: The Creation (Linn)
The three-time Grammy-nominated Boston Baroque, widely regarded as ‘one of the world's premier period-instruments bands' (Fanfare), marks the beginning of its relationship with Linn with a two-disc recording of Haydn's The Creation.
'...the results are spectacular.' Audiophile Audition
9 Phantasm - William Lawes: Consorts to the Organ (Linn)
Named 'Chamber Choice' by BBC Music Magazine this recording of music by English Renaissance composer William Lawes, some versions of which are premiere recordings, received five stars from many publications.
'The players animate Lawes' stately dances with fleet rhythms, elucidate his dark counterpoint and create an aptly vaporous quality in his more haunting, ethereal pieces...The consort sound is luminescent.' BBC
10 Emily Barker - Almanac (Everybody Sang)
Emily Barker is a compelling songwriter with a gift for weaving melody and words. ‘Almanac' features 'Pause', the theme tune from the Ivor Novello Award-winning soundtrack of BBC TV drama 'The Shadow Line' and was nominated for a 2012 Spiral Earth Award and named 'Record of the Week' by BBC Radio 6.
Choice: ‘...this is a dream of a record.' BBC Music