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 Theatre of the Ayre - The Masque of Moments
Elizabeth Kenny's Theatre of the Ayre reveals some of the most extraordinary music of the seventeenth century on 'The Masque of Moments', their debut recording for Linn.
'...there are exquisite sounds from Kenny's plucked-instrument ensemble, and beautiful numbers from masques...with nicely refined singing.' The Observer
2 Avison Ensemble - Handel: Concerti Grossi, Op. 6
One of our most popular Handel recordings is the Avison Ensemble's performance of the Concerti Grossi, music widely regarded as the composer's greatest contribution to the Baroque period. These highly innovative works demonstrate his inexhaustible ability for invention and variation.
'The ensemble playing is simply electrifying, crackling and sparking with the kind of head-on accents and lilting rhythmic lift that this music requires but rarely enjoys.' Classics Today
3 Oliver Knussen - Stravinsky: The Soldier's Tale
For his debut recording with Linn, conductor Oliver Knussen has assembled an impressive cast of contemporary composers for The Soldier's Tale: Harrison Birtwistle as the soldier and George Benjamin as the Devil, with actress Dame Harriet Walter as the narrator.
'...this new account goes straight to the top of the pile...a dazzling account of a modern classic.' Europadisc
4 William Carter - Bach Reimagines Bach
William Carter's exemplary musicianship is showcased to its fullest on this new recording of Bach's own transcriptions for the lute. Almost unplayable in parts many musicians take certain liberties with the music so that it flows more naturally, but Carter's determined approach to authenticity sees the lutenist achieve the near impossible: playing the music as it was originally written.
5 Dunedin Consort - J.S. Bach: Six Brandenburg Concertos
Dunedin Consort's first instrumental release demonstrates its collective experience and historical knowledge in a fresh performance under the direction of Bach specialist John Butt.
'...a profoundly expressive study in texture and articulation, with the string lines effortlessly and naturally interlaced.' The Guardian
6 Scottish Chamber Orchestra - Mozart: Symphonies 38-41
A multi-award winning double album of some of Mozart's finest symphonic works. This recording was named BBC Music Magazine's one of '5 Essential Works by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart' by BBC Music Magazine in 2012 as well as being a winner at the 2009 Classical BRIT Awards (Critics' Award 2009) and the 2009 BBC Music Magazine Awards (Disc of the Year Award and Orchestral Award).
'...among the very best recordings of these four symphonies on disc.' The Times
7 Chiyan Wong - Liszt Transfigured: Operatic Fantasies for Piano
The hugely talented pianist Chiyan Wong makes his recording debut with the phenomenally difficult Liszt transcriptions of well-known opera melodies. A broad and thoughtful musician, Chiyan's special interest in the music of Franz Liszt, has led to him perfecting his own editions of these popular operatic fantasies. Following Liszt's own advice regarding transcriptions, Chiyan concentrates on communicating the spirit and intention of the music whilst applying his own personal touches.
8 Scottish Chamber Orchestra - Mozart: Symphonies 29-36
Sir Charles Mackerras returns to conduct the Scottish Chamber Orchestra in a definitive performance of five of Mozart's finest symphonies. This recording was named a Finalist at the 2010 Gramophone Awards and was acclaimed across the media.
'This is some of the best Mozart I have ever heard...The Scots are true Mozart-heroes...Essential.' Audiophile Audition
9 Dunedin Consort - J.S. Bach: Christmas Oratorio
Anticipation is high since the Magnificat was named 'Choice' by Gramophone, topped the critics' Christmas recommendation lists and received multiple five stars reviews. Fans will once again be thrilled as John Butt delivers another revelatory performance.
'It's surely one of the finest accounts now available of Bach's Christmas Oratorio. The choral sound is pert, sinewy, unforced; the instrumental playing is punchy, broad and charismatic.' The Guardian
10 Artur Pizarro - Beethoven: Piano Concertos 3, 4 & 5
Following perfect takes of Concertos 3 and 4 on day one of the recording sessions, the 'Emperor' was a last minute addition to the schedule. The result? Three fantastic performances by Pizarro and the Scottish Chamber Orchestra led by Charles Mackerras.
'...these are not performances lacking in explosive voltage, as Pizarro's lightening dexterity in the Emperor proves conclusively.' The Scotsman