Classical Top 10
The Classical Top Ten reflects what other classical fans are buying now and might give you some good ideas for your next purchase.
1 Phantasm - Lawes: The Royal Consort
Phantasm celebrates William Lawes with a sublime collection of premier recordings with guest musician Elizabeth Kenny. Described as 'one of the greatest collections of ensemble dance music ever composed', Lawes' Royal Consort is full of astounding moments of striking musical invention.
Choice: 'Award-winners, category finalists on many other occasions, Phantasm continue to excel. This Royal Consort, the first complete performance of the original versions, confirms that status.' Gramophone
2 John Butt and Lucy Russell - J.S. Bach: Sonatas for violin & harpsichord
Lucy Russell's performance explores the colours and emotions present in the music as well as highlighting Bach's good humour and quirkiness. The duo relish the energetic dialogue and astonishingly diverse moods and characters present in Bach's music.
'Harpsichordist John Butt...revels in the invention of the contrapuntal lines and fully embraces the keyboard's emancipation from accompanying role to sparring partner.' The Guardian
3 KUNIKO - Xenakis: IX
Kuniko's much-anticipated third studio recording features the works of Iannis Xenakis; although classified by many as unplayable Kuniko's unrivalled prowess sees her perfectly realize the composer's vision.
'Her thrilling performance of this remarkable piece [Pléïades] is astonishingly confident and absolutely hypnotic.' SA-CD.net
4 Trevor Pinnock and Royal Academy of Music Soloists Ensemble - Mahler: Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen (arr. Schoenberg)
Schoenberg's own arrangement of Mahler's intensely personal song cycle is followed by Erwin Stein's arrangement of Busoni's landmark composition Berceuse elegiaque. Specially commissioned for this chamber series is Christopher Austin's arrangement of Zemlinsky's evocative Sechs Gesange, which enjoys its premiere recording here. Closing the disc is Wagner's infamous Siegfried Idyll.
5 Boston Baroque - Monteverdi: Il ritorno d'Ulisse in patria
'Il ritorno d'Ulisse' is unquestionably one of the three pillars that place Monteverdi among the greatest of all opera composers. Based on Homer's Odyssey the drama is rich and engaging throughout. This recording marks the premiere of a new performing version by conductor Martin Pearlman.
Classical Album of the Week: 'The strength of this issue is in its strong, youthful cast...Fernando Guimaraes's Ulysses is heartbreaking...' The Sunday Times
6 Ingrid Fliter - Chopin: Preludes
For her second recital the award-winning pianist performs Chopin's Op. 28, a poetic collection of great emotional power and unrivalled artistic quality which demands high virtuosity. Ingrid has also recorded a selection of mazurkas, nocturnes and ecossaises to accompany the preludes, of which the 3 ecossaises are exclusively available to download for free from LinnRecords.com.
'...a torrential account of the B flat minor prelude, as exciting as any I've ever heard.' The Guardian
7 Thomas Sondergard - Sibelius: Symphonies 2 and 7
With their nationalist themes Symphonies 2 & 7 are perfect repertoire for Thomas Søndergård and his orchestra, the BBC National Orchestra of Wales, to make their symphonic recording debut.
'I can only welcome, with fast-beating heart, one of the great new Sibelian teams into the record business...Sondergard's Sibelius Two is breathtaking...Their flawless performance of the Seventh Symphony, if you love this music, will break your heart.' The Herald
8 Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists - Mozart: Divertimenti
With several award-winning Mozart recordings to its name, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra's Mozart credentials are impeccable. Here the orchestra's wind soloists take centre stage: Maximiliano Martin and William Stafford on clarinet, Peter Whelan and Alison Green on bassoon and Alec Frank-Gemmill and Harry Johnstone on horn.
Choice: 'I fancy Mozart would have smiled in approval.' Gramophone
9 Dunedin Consort - J.S. Bach: Six Brandenburg Concertos
Dunedin Consort, the team that brought you ‘John Passion', is back with its first instrumental release, which has already been named Gramophone 'Choice'. Under the direction of Bach specialist John Butt, Dunedin Consort demonstrates its collective experience and historical knowledge in an exceptionally joyful and fresh performance.
'...a profoundly expressive study in texture and articulation.' The Guardian
10 Dunedin Consort - Mozart: Requiem
We cannot wait for you to hear this brand new version of Mozart's great unfinished choral masterpiece. John Butt's Dunedin Consort are in spectacular form as they perform David Black's edition of Süssmayr's completion of Mozart's Requiem.
2014 Gramophone Award Winner: ‘Purely on grounds of performance alone, this is one of the finest Mozart Requiems of recent years...a thrilling performance.' Gramophone