Al Ayre Español Edition [8CDs] (2012)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Al Ayre Español Edition [8CDs] (2012)

Al Ayre Español Edition: Durón, Galán, Iribarren, Navas, Literes, San Juan, Torres, Valls (2012)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 2,29 Gb | Total time: 08:12:01 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Deutsche Harmonia Mundi | # 88691953052 | Recorded: 1994-2001

Al Ayre Español is a vocal and instrumental ensemble formed in 1988 by the conductor Eduardo López Banzo. The ensemble plays period instruments and has brought back to life Spanish Baroque Music music, renewing the interest of contemporary audiences. The name of the band ('ayre' is an ancient word for 'aire') makes reference to playing music 'the Spanish way' ('con aire español').

Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Concentus musicus Wien - Bach: 4 Orchestral Suites (2008)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Concentus musicus Wien - Bach: 4 Orchestral Suites (2008)

Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Concentus musicus Wien - Bach: 4 Orchestral Suites (2008)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 619 Mb | Total time: 53:58+49:57 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Teldec | # 2564 69457-5 | Recorded: 1966

This well-documented and handsomely presented set is well worth considering. Harnoncourt led the way in ‘authentic’ Bach performances, and in some respects – the slow minuets and the somewhat portentous introductions, for instance – these Sixties recordings differ from more recent practice. But no matter, since the approach is full of life, and the balance allows details to be heard clearly and naturally. The fugal sections are particularly successful.
– Terry Barfoot

Sophie Yates - Spanish & Portuguese Harpsichord (1994)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Sophie Yates - Spanish & Portuguese Harpsichord (1994)

John Eliot Gardiner, English Baroque Soloists - Handel: Water Music (1993)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 357 Mb | Total time: 63:37 | Digital booklet
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 0560 | Recorded: 1993

Sophie Yates’s 1993 debut CD offered a fine selection of French Baroque harpsichord music. For this second disc she has turned her attention south to Spain and Portugal and back to the 16th as well as 17th century. The repertoire, though less familiar, is certainly attractive – delightful examples of tiento and diferencias by Cabezón; Coelho’s compelling Segunda Susana; the ornate traceries of Ximénez and Cabanilles. And all played with a graceful eloquence that is quietly impressive.
Graham Lock

Gustav Leonhardt - Couperin: Works for Harpsichord (1997)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Gustav Leonhardt - Couperin: Works for Harpsichord (1997)

Gustav Leonhardt - Couperin: Works for Harpsichord (1997)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 503 Mb | Total time: 64:53 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Philips | # 454 470-2 | Recorded: 1995

For almost 50 years, Gustav Leonhardt - harpsichordist, organist and, most recently, conductor - has counted among the most respected specialists in both the theory and practice of early music. Acclaimed for his numerous recordings of music ranging from keyboard masterpieces of the early Baroque to Mozart's sonatas, Leonhardt has played a critical role in bringing period-instrument performance into the mainstream of classical music life.

Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players - Václav Pichl: Symphonies (1999)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players - Václav Pichl: Symphonies (1999)

Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players - Václav Pichl: Symphonies (1999)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 299 Mb | Total time: 68:07 | Digital booklet
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 9740 | Recorded: 1997

Václav (Wenzel) Pichl was born on September 25, 1741 of humble parentage, at Bechyne. He began his musical studies with Jan Pokorny, the local choirmaster and teacher. Pichl's list of works includes twenty operas, thirty masses, eighty-nine symphonies, thirty concertos, and a huge body of chamber music, including 148 pieces which he wrote for Joseph Haydn's employer. The Symphony in B flat, Z23 is scored for strings, two oboes and two horns. A solemn and substantial introductory Grave prefaces a vivacious sonata-form Allegro assai with two contrasting themes, a taut development section, and a condensed recapitulation….

Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players - François-Joseph Gossec: Symphonies (1998)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players -  François-Joseph Gossec: Symphonies (1998)

Matthias Bamert, London Mozart Players - François-Joseph Gossec: Symphonies (1998)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 298 Mb | Total time: 66:56 | Digital booklet
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 9661 | Recorded: 1997

This disc of five symphonies by François-Joseph Gossec (1734-1829) is part of Chandos' Contemporaries of Mozart series. As he was born two years after Haydn and died two years before Schubert, he was also a contemporary of Beethoven as well as many other composers of the Classical and early Romantic periods. Like Haydn, Gossec lead a successful career in music that included composing, performing, teaching and various directorship positions throughout France. (Yes kids, you can make money in music, no matter what your parents say!) As would be expected, Gossec was highly prolific, producing no fewer than thirty works for the stage, a large body of choral and chamber music, and over fifty symphonies.

Lamberto Gardelli, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Montserrat Caballé - Rossini: Guillaume Tell (2010)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Lamberto Gardelli, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Montserrat Caballé - Rossini: Guillaume Tell (2010)

Lamberto Gardelli, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Montserrat Caballé - Rossini: Guillaume Tell (2010)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 1,01 Gb | Total time: 66:34+73:00+58:00+40:14 | Scans included
Classical | Label: EMI Classics | # 6407632 | Recorded: 1973

Guillaume Tell was the composer’s last and longest opera. I do not think I would go on to say that it was also necessarily his best, but it is certainly an amazing work full of life. It is, in many ways, both a summation of his operatic genius and a tantalizing glimpse of what might have been had he continued to write for the stage. Like his other last operas it was written for Paris and in its scale and mixture of public and private events is a clear forerunner of such works as Les Huguenots and Don Carlos. At the same time it can be regarded as essentially classical, but with that style subtly transfigured into one that is just as essentially romantic. It represents a turning point in the history of opera, so that the obvious question arises as to why it is so seldom encountered on the stage, and why many music-lovers know it solely by its undoubtedly magnificent overture.

Fretwork - Sublime Discourses: The Complete Instrumental Music of John Milton and Martin Peerson (2011)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Fretwork - Sublime Discourses: The Complete Instrumental Music of John Milton and Martin Peerson (2011)

Fretwork - Sublime Discourses: The Complete Instrumental Music of John Milton and Martin Peerson (2011)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 311 Mb | Total time: 61:34 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Regent Records | # REGCD341 | Recorded: 2009, 2010

Fretwork here unveils some obscure but engaging works from the golden age of English consort music by the little-known but accomplished composers Martin Peerson and John Milton, father of the celebrated poet. The programme combines scholarship, performance and recording technology to bring to light some two-dozen forgotten works, from dancing almaines to brooding intricate fantasias.

Rinaldo Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano - Alessandro Scarlatti: Cantata per la Notte di Natale (1996)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Rinaldo Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano - Alessandro Scarlatti: Cantata per la Notte di Natale (1996)

Rinaldo Alessandrini, Concerto Italiano - Alessandro Scarlatti: Cantata per la Notte di Natale (1996)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 338 Mb | Total time: 71:21 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Opus 111 | # OPS 30-156 | Recorded: 1996

Extraordinarily, Alessandro Scarlatti (who died in 1725 and forms a strong bridge between the mature Baroque and later classical traditions, according to musicologist Edward Dent) wrote some sixty-four operas, twenty oratorios, hundreds of chamber cantatas, and a host of madrigals, masses, motets, toccatas, concertos, sonatas and symphonies. Very little of this is heard today, sadly, except in specialist circles. Perhaps one of the more popularly performed pieces is 'Abramo, il tuo sembiante' (a Christmas cantata). When Handel visited Italy between 1706 and 1710, he met Scarlatti and may even have studied with him. This performance of said cantata is well within the Italian style - clear lines and intricate ornamentation.

Rolando Villazon, Paul McCreesh, Gabrieli Players - Handel: Arias (2009)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Rolando Villazon, Paul McCreesh, Gabrieli Players - Handel: Arias (2009)

Rolando Villazón, Paul McCreesh, Gabrieli Players - Handel: Arias (2009)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 286 Mb | Total time: 59:26 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Deutsche Grammophon | # 477 8056 | Recorded: 2008

Internationally acclaimed tenor Rolando Villazón presents an all-new recording of Italian arias by Handel. Though Villazón is not generally associated with this repertoire, his muscular and virile performances are a thrilling and new way to hear Handel. Paul McCreesh (a noted Handel expert) and the exciting Gabrieli Players join Villazón giving the listener both an authentic period performance as well as a new twist on familiar Handel. To suit his voice, Villazón performs not only tenor arias, but also transposed mezzo arias a practice familiar to Handel. This is a unique and wonderfully thrilling album completely unlike Villazón s previous recordings.

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Domestic Music, Vol. 3 (1992)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Domestic Music, Vol. 3 (1992)

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Domestic Music, Vol. 3 (1992)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 390 Mb | Total time: 78:35 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 0525 | Recorded: 1991

By comparison with the ambitious, sometimes pioneering products of the last musically active decade of his life (1755-1765) much of Telemann's chamber music is conventional in language if not always in form. Nevertheless, we should guard against any assessment which views it as merely fluent. Telemann's chamber suites and cantatas, solo sonatas, trios, quartets and songs almost invariably carry the hallmark of a composer whose understanding of the voices and instruments for which he is writing is both imaginatively practical and technically informed.

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Overture Burlesque, Vol. 2 (1991)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Overture Burlesque, Vol. 2 (1991)

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: Overture Burlesque, Vol. 2 (1991)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 316 Mb | Total time: 64:06 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 0512 | Recorded: 1990

Five lesser-known pieces (one orchestral suite and four instrumental concertos) from the over-abundant pen of Georg Philipp Telemann are presented in this second collection by the British ensemble Collegium Musicum 90, here directed by its co-founder, gifted violinist Simon Standage, whose earlier recordings with the English Concert and the Academy of Ancient Music are the guarantors of his classiness.

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: La Changeante, Vol.1 (1991)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: La Changeante, Vol.1 (1991)

Simon Standage, Collegium Musicum 90 - Telemann: La Changeante, Vol.1 (1991)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 314 Mb | Total time: 63:20 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Chandos | # CHAN 0519 | Recorded: 1990

Recorded in 1990 at Rosslyn Hill Chapel, Hampstead (London), this beautifully produced CD contains six lesser-known works for violin(s) by Germany’s most prolific 18th century composer, Georg Philipp Telemann, who was, during his lifetime, considerably more famous (and more in demand) than any of the Bach dynasty. But as Nicholas Anderson points out in his rather brief introduction to this music, “Telemann did not altogether avoid in his own music those features which he criticised in others; sometimes his harmonies seem sparse, his passagework perfunctory.” Telemann was a great musician, but the violin “seems to have been that in which he was least fluent”. It is also well-known that Telemann’s facility in composing has gained him a reputation for producing quantity rather than quality – a reputation which, on the whole, is undeserved.

Harmonia Mundi - Opera Baroque - Italia: Vecchi, Rore, Monteverdi, Cavalli, A.Scarlatti [10cd] (2013)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Harmonia Mundi - Opera Baroque - Italia: Vecchi, Rore, Monteverdi, Cavalli, A.Scarlatti [10cd] (2013)

Harmonia Mundi - Opéra Baroque - Italia: Vecchi, Rore, Monteverdi, Cavalli, A.Scarlatti [10cd] (2013)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 2,61 Gb | Total time: 625:14 | Digital booklet (PDF)
Classical | Label: Harmonia Mundi | # HMX2908658.99 | Recorded: 1982, 1990, 1992, 2002

This luxurious set containing 39 CDs, 3 DVDs, 1 CD-Rom and four detailed booklets will tell you the full story of Baroque opera in Italy, France, England, and Germany. No fewer than 17 complete operas (including two on DVD) and two supplementary CDs (the dawn of opera, Overtures for the Hamburg Opera) provide the most comprehensive overview of the genre ever attempted! The finest performers are assembled here under the direction of René Jacobs and William Christie to offer you 47 hours of music. An opportunity to discover or to hear again the masterpieces of Baroque opera, some of which have been unavailable on CD for many years.

Anthony Lewis, The English Chamber Orchestra, Janet Baker - Handel: Tamerlano (2008)

Posted By: ArlegZ
Anthony Lewis, The English Chamber Orchestra, Janet Baker - Handel: Tamerlano (2008)

Anthony Lewis, The English Chamber Orchestra, Janet Baker - Handel: Tamerlano (2008)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue & Log) ~ 1,14 Gb | Total time: 79:34+76:51+69:00 | Scans included
Classical | Label: Ponto | # PO-1058 | Recorded: 1972

The first pleasant surprise here is the brightness and clarity of the radio broadcast sound; indeed, it is a bit too bright and harsh but better that than muddiness. There is evidently an audience who applaud at the end but otherwise there is no extraneous noise throughout. Secondly, there is the spring and bounce of the English Chamber Orchestra, alertly directed by Baroque specialist Sir Anthony Lewis. Thirdly we hear a first rate cast of splendid voices headed by Janet Baker, an array of voices unequalled in any of the other nine extant recordings. True, the performance is over forty years old but several of the subsequent recordings are in versions other than Handel's final thoughts before the 1724 premiere and are very much more expensive than this Ponto issue - furthermore, it offers as a bonus a live, 1972 recording of Berlioz's "Les nuits d'été" sung by Janet Baker and played by the BSO conducted by Colin Davis.