Time for a review of classical CDs that were outstanding in 2014 . My lists for the previous years: 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, (2011 – “Almost”), 2010, (2010 – “Almost”), 2009, (2009 – “Almost”), 2008, (2008 - "Almost") 2007, 2006, 2005, 2004.
# 10 - New Release
Wartime Consolations, Linus Roth (violin), José Gallardo (piano), Ruben Gazarian, Württemberg CO Heilbronn, Challenge SACD
K.A.Hartmann, M.Weinberg, D.Shostakovich
Concerto funebre, Moldavian Rhapsody, Concertino, Unfinished Violin Sonata
Ruben Gazarian / Württemberg CO Heilbronn
L.Roth, J.Gallardo (piano)
The disc is again a Gramophone Magazine Editor’s Choice (“an eminently collectable disc”) that arts editors took turns lauding as “a strikingly rewarding programme” (The Telegraph) and commending Roth for unearthing the “fascinating find” (The Observer) of the unfinished first movement of a Shostakovich Violin-Sonata-to-be. (Of which this is the world premiere recording.) I would pipe up to suggest that the Württemberg Chamber Orchestra Heilbronn plays nearly as well as the DSO Berlin did on the last disc, or that the soloist finds just the right balance between dark and light, sorrow and twisted joy. But I must recuse myself, having written the liner notes for this release.
# 10 – Reissue
D.Shostakovich, A.Glazunov, Violin Concertos, Itzhak Perlman (violin), Z.Mehta, Israel PO, Warner
Dimitri Shostakovich, Alexander Glazunov
Violin Concerto No.1, Violin Concerto
Itzhak Perlman (violin)
Israel Philharmonic Orchestra
Zubin Mehta (conductor)
But his best is amazing and the beauty of these insanely wonderful boxes from Warner is that each album—sturdy cardboard jacket, sleeve, liner notes, spine—can be bought individually. This record stands to some degree for the excellent production values of the set. But it also happens to be one of the most successful recordings of the lot. Perlman’s songful ways become the Shostakovich concerto tremendously, dolefully. It makes you wonder why Perlman never recorded the Second Shostakovich concert. The
fin de siècle element in the caroling concerto of Glazunov’s—teacher of, among others, Shostakovich himself, Mischa Elman, Jascha Heifetz, and Nathan Milstein—suits Perlman just as well… and it speaks to his interpretation (and Zubin Mehta and the Israel Philharmonic at their occasional best in this live recording) that it withstands the competition of all these students of Glazunov and all the other great violinists who have given the Glazunov a shot.