Now in his sixty-fourth year and three years the junior of his composer brother David, it is hard to believe that Colin Matthews is approaching an age whereby that affectionate, if paradoxically unflattering tag of 'elder statesman' amongst British composers might be applied.
Something of an English Magnus Lindberg in his mastery of huge orchestral canvases and forces such as those employed in the Fourth and Fifth orchestral Sonatas, Matthews' considerable influence as a composer has been mirrored by his extra-curricular activities as a ……..Christopher Thomas @ musicweb-international.com
This disc committed to chamber music of Colin Matthews is an entry in NMC's Ancora series, a worthy venture devoted to bringing back into print recordings of contemporary music by British composers that have been deleted. Some of these pieces go back to the LP era, and even had to be transferred from vinyl as the original masters have gone astray. Divertimento for double string quartet (1982) is a signature piece from Matthews and unique in his output, being …………Uncle Dave Lewis @ AllMusic
"The Great Journey" is Colin Matthews' largest vocal work, running to nearly forty minutes. It is a setting of a condensation of the report by Alvar Nu-ez Cabeza de Vaca (c 1490 - c 1560) to Emperor Charles V. Cabeza de Vaca was part of a ill-planned Spanish expedition seeking the legendary (and unsubstantiated) treasures of Florida. The expedition shipwrecked. Left for dead in the swampy land, he was rescued by and lived among the Indians. He found three other stranded Spaniards. Together they made an incredible journey back to Spanish territory, travelling through totally unknown lands from Florida to Mexico, arriving at Spanish settlements nine years after their fleet left Spain……Joseph Stevenson @ AllMusic
This recording of one of Haydn’s greatest masterpieces is not to be missed. Those who are familiar with Colin Davis’s recordings of the Haydn London Symphonies, made over 30 years ago with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, will know that he has a special affection for this composer’s music and unfailingly communicates his love of it to both performers and listeners alike. Surprisingly this would appear to be the first time that he has recorded Haydn’s Creation, but it has been worth the wait.
Best of 2007 Classical CDs ‘This thrilling performance was given in the Barbican last May when Sir Colin excelled himself in the power & nobility of his interpretation, with the LSO in terrific form, & the American soprano Christine Brewer sang with gleaming white-hot tone as Leonore. The final paean of joy at liberation is overwhelming. 1st-class recording quality.
After five straight solo recordings with producer Mark Hallman at the helm – going back to 1988 – Iain Matthews decided to handle the production duties, along with guitarist Bradley Kopp, for 1999's Excerpts from Swine Lake. Whereas his last couple of recordings lived and died with his writing or vocals, here Matthews and Kopp inject the material with a vibrance that has been somewhat scarce in his work since 1990's Pure & Crooked. It also doesn't hurt that this is as consistent a collection of original music that he's put to record.
After a two-month tour in 1999, Dave and Tim closed their acoustic run on the evening of March 13 at the Berkeley Community Theater in Berkeley, CA. The duo’s time on the road leading up to this night shows as the performance is exceptional. From the first note of the “Granny” opener, to the encore of "Digging A Ditch”, "Lover Lay Down", and "Ants Marching,” there is not an ill note throughout. And yet, it’s not only DMB favorites that shine; but also Tim’s skilled playing of his complex original compositions, as well as fantastic covers of Daniel Lanois’ "For The Beauty of Wynona" and Lyle Lovett’s "If I Had A Boat", make this show a true listening pleasure. This intimate performance has been mixed from the original multitrack tapes.