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 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, with the string lines effortlessly and naturally interlaced.' The Guardian
2 Benjamin Zander - Mahler: Symphony No. 2
Mahler's hugely popular ‘Resurrection' Symphony is exceptionally challenging and thrillingly powerful; it is the perfect showcase for Benjamin Zander's distinctive balance of insightful musicianship and emotional intensity.
The GRAMMY-nominated conductor is joined by the Philharmonia Orchestra, British mezzo-soprano Sarah Connolly and Swedish soprano Miah Persson.
‘Zander's dynamic direction suffused every pore of the orchestra.' The Guardian
3 Riccardo Chailly - Brahms: The Symphonies
This comprehensive overview of Brahms's orchestral works includes several rarities, among them world premieres of two piano intermezzi orchestrated by Paul Klengel (brother of the Gewandhaus's long-standing principal cellist Julius Klengel) and the original first performance version of the Andante of Symphony No. 1 and the even rarer revised opening of the Fourth Symphony.
4 Profeti della Quinta - Il Mantovano Hebreo
When Profeti della Quinta came to Linn's attention as winners of the 2011 York Early Music Young Artists Competition, we were immediately excited to work with them on this project, which is of personal significance to the young a cappella ensemble. The award-winning native Hebrew speaking singers specialize in the music of the
Italian Baroque and have an immediate connection to Rossi as a Jewish Italian composer. ‘Il Mantovano Hebreo' is a programme which encompasses Rossi's many-faceted talents both as a court composer and as a unique innovator of devotional music for the synagogue.
5 KUNIKO - cantus
cantus' is Kuniko's spellbinding new album. Her eagerly awaited second album includes world premiere recordings of the percussionist's new arrangements of popular works by contemporary composers. It is made even more special as the arrangements and recording have been made with supervision by the original composers: Arvo Part, Steve Reich and Hywel Davies.
'...outstanding. Why can't all records sound this good?' La Scena Musicale
6 The Avison Ensemble- Corelli: Opus 2 and 4: Chamber Sonatas
'Opus 2 & 4 Chamber Sonatas' marks the third recording in a series which will see The Avison Ensemble record Corelli's complete chamber music, commemorating the 300th anniversary of the composer's death in 2013. The press has been unanimous in its praise:
'...the sense of the ensemble is faultless... breathtakingly impressive.' Gramophone
7 Dunedin Consort - Messiah (Dublin Version, 1742)
This superb 2-disc set, which features the Messiah as premiered by Handel in Dublin in 1742, was named the winner of Baroque Vocal Album of the Year in the 2007 Gramophone Awards.
Album of the Day: 'One of the most compelling and engaging Messiahs on disc.' Allmusic.com
8 Cappella Nova - Alpha and Omega
Cappella Nova's third volume of choral works by leading contemporary composer, James MacMillan features six premiere recordings. This recording is made even more special because Missa Dunelmi is conducted here by the composer himself. Over 25 years the choir has established an intuitive response to MacMillan's work and a passion for his creativity which is evident on ‘Alpha & Omega'.
‘Cappella Nova perfectly capture MacMillan's profound sense of the sacred.' Gramophone
9 Vasily Petrenko - Shostakovich: Symphony No. 4
One of Shostakovich's most highly-regarded works, the Symphony No. 4 was completed in 1936 but withdrawn during rehearsal and not performed until 1961. The composer explores and stretches his musical language in a harrowing work of enormous range and power.
Recording of the Month: 'Perhaps the best of Petrenko's much-praised Shostakovich cycle.' Gramophone
10 Academy of Ancient Music - Birth Of The Symphony: Handel to Haydn
The recording includes brilliant and rarely-heard works by composers of the avant-garde ‘Mannheim school', Richter and Stamitz, as well as Haydn's mature 'La passione' symphony.
'A striking success... Expertly led by harpsichordist Richard Egarr, and superbly played, it programmes an attractive selection of symphonies by five 18th-century composers to illustrate the title 'Birth of the symphony'. The contents prove enjoyable both in sequence and as historical display case.' BBC Music Magazine