'FESTMUSIK" Music of Richard Strauss, Schumann,
Brahms, Mendelssohn,Rubenstein and Franz
ADAMS: Chamber Symphony. Common Tones in Simple Time. Son of
HANDEL: Concerti Grossi, Op. 3
Some time ago, this site praised the Chandos SACD called A Festival of Fanfares performed by the new brass ensemble Onyx Brass (REVIEW). Now we have their latest disk, called Festmusik. It opens and closes with music of Richard Strauss as listed above. All are premiere recordings except for the Strauss FestmusikFestmusik der Stadt Wien. This is the only work on this recording in original scoring; all the others are transcriptions for brass ensemble. Onyx Brass consists of Mall Keatley and Alan Thomas, trumpets; Andrew Sutton, French horn; Amos Miller, trombone; and David Gordon-Shute, tuba. In the works requiring more than a brass quintet, Onyx Brass is joined by other fine British artists, all identified in program notes. Recordings were made October 2020 in London's St. Augustine Church, and the Chandos engineers have provided their usual mullti-track audio. This disk contains many oddities, not necessarily of great importance, but we now have the opportunity to her them.
The BMOP label continues to issue SACDs of prime interest for the collector. This latest features music of John Adams including the composer's first orchestral work, composed in 1979, Common Tones in Simple Time. written in minimalist style. We also have the Chamber Symphony (1992) and Son of Chamber Symphony (2007). Each of †these has three movements bursting with typical Adams energy and motion. These performances by Gil Rose and his orchestra are dazzling, and the recording richly captcaptures this exciting music in impressive audio. A fine issue!
Van Diemen's Band was founded in 2016 and features outstand Tasmanian early music specialists. Martin Gester, harpsichordist, organist, pianist and conductor, leads the group in these performances of Handel's six Concerti Grossi, Op. 3, probably sounding similar to the way they did about three centuries ago Recordings were made October/November 2019 in the Church of St. Canice, Sandy Bay, Tasmania, and the BIS engineering could not be bettered.
R.E.B. (June 2021)