Kings Place, London
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Thursday 03 June 2010
Though they are leaders of a loose confederation of new dream pop bands, Beach House make for strange scene figureheads as they shamble on stage, hidden behind ragged fringes and awkward banter. Such simple failings in stage presence are forgotten, however, within about 30 seconds of the first song of a majestic set.
Friday 28 May 2010
This third volume in the "LCO Live" series is a programme loosely connected by the theme of betrayed women, opening with the overture to Rossini's La Scala Di Seta and concluding with Beethoven's concert aria "Ah! Perfido", with three pieces by Mozart sandwiched between, including two arias from Le Nozze Di Figaro. Susan Gritton's delivery of the three arias has an exquisite balance of grace and intensity befitting their spurned heroines, while the LCO's presentation of Mozart's Symphony No 1 and the later Adagio and Fugue in C minor vividly illustrates the composer's growth, from the shallow enthusiasm of the symphony to the darker, troubled terrain of the fugue.
Kerry Camden: Outstanding bassoonist of his generation celebrated for his colourful and virtuoso style
Tuesday 25 May 2010
The bassoonist Kerry Camden was one of the most distinguished musicians of his generation.
Friday 13 November 2009
Mercury Rev are the kind of group for whom Peel Sessions were originally conceived: an all-channels-open, questing outfit who took the opportunity to reassess old favourites and break virgin territory.
Sunday 30 August 2009
Warm, silky, flexible and lithe, the core sound of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe's strings under director/violinist Alexander Janiczek bends easily to the capricious moods and textures of "Apollon musagète".
Sunday 31 May 2009
Wolf is the outrageously talented, outlandishly dressed polysexual polymath who specialises in fusing the classical and the hi-tech. The fact that this, his fourth album, features both Tilda Swinton and Alec Empire speaks volumes. Tracks such as the soaring, sweeping "Oblivion" meld scratched-CD glitches with musketeer flourishes, as a backdrop for Wolf's mannered yet emotional voice. Exceptions are the straightforwardly dancefloor-friendly single "Vulture" and the rave-metal of "Battle".
Tuesday 07 April 2009
Veteran conductor Sir Charles Mackerras picked up two awards at the prestigious BBC Music Magazine Awards 2009 for classical recording excellence today.
Thursday 02 April 2009
Pamela Spofforth was an extraordinary and inspiring teacher of the violin and, with the cellist, Elizabeth Hewlins, brought about nothing less than a transformation of the playing of chamber music in this country. Pro Corda (the National School for Young Chamber Music Players), which they founded in 1969 and which continues to flourish, has inspired two generations of young musicians with the joys and challenges of playing string quartets and "Spoff", as she was known by many pupils and friends, gave unselfishly of her time, energy and money to that end throughout her working life.
Sunday 30 November 2008
At some point during the recording sessions for this disc, the Nash Ensemble must have decided to play as though live, and not to the microphone.
Sunday 24 August 2008
Sunday 03 August 2008
Directed by harpsichordist Pieter-Jan Belder, Musica Amphion's recording of Purcell's chamber music on Brilliant Classics should tempt the most impecunious of you.
Sunday 22 June 2008
The faintest of French inflections on soprano Julie Hassler's Ts and Ds are tiny blemishes on this otherwise flawless recital of Purcell's songs and chamber music.
Sunday 24 February 2008
Mozart's last symphonies are among the most-recorded works in the canon, with enough performances to satisfy the most dedicated collector. Yet few recordings have the authority and warmth of this release from the SCO and Sir Charles Mackerras. Recorded in the conductor's 80th year, the performances have vigour and wisdom, bloom and attack, sensuality and rigour, and a notably dynamic cello and bass section. Tart natural trumpets and secco kettle-drums add a tang of authenticity, while the mellow woodwind sweeten the mix. Hackneyed to say that such familiar music sounds fresh, but it does.
Friday 22 February 2008
The Punch Brothers are the new band formed by Nickel Creek mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile, an association of expert country musicians whose debut does for bluegrass what The Gospel at Colonus did for gospel – develops a folk art into high art.
Sunday 20 January 2008
Over 50,000 families shipped out of London boroughs in the past three years due to welfare cuts and soaring rents
In defence of liberal democracy
EU asylum policy is 'a direct threat to our civilisation', says Nigel Farage
The Rothschild Libel: Why has it taken 200 years for an anti-Semitic slur that emerged from the Battle of Waterloo to be dismissed?
General Election 2015: UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power, Labour warns
Schools forced to act as 'miniature welfare states' with teachers buying underwear and even haircuts for poor pupils
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