It would be difficult to imagine a finer account of this extraordinary work than that of the Melos Quartet and their distinguished guest. The flow of the music is magnificently sustained, its colour and inner life marvellously felt. There is a spontaneity to the playing that perfectly complements the profound whimsicality of Schubert's journeys to remote tonal regions, along with a sensitivity ideally suited to the meditative quality of the composer's lyricism. The recording is warm and spacious, richly nuanced, and admirably balanced.
This was to be the end of the line for Italian word-setting by Viennese composers: once the confident sentiments that belonged to the poet Metastasio's opera seria felt the chill and threatening wind of Enlightenment and Revolution, their time was up. Even we, for the most part, prefer to remember the German-speaking Beethoven, Schubert and Haydn. So it is good to be reminded of their responses to the Italian muse (usually as part of their craft-learning student work) in this particularly well-cast recital. Central Europe, in the person of Andras Schiff meets Italy, in Cecilia Bartoli, to delightful, often revelatory effect.
Violinist Benjamin Beilman makes his debut as an exclusive Warner Classics artist with Spectrum, an album uniting works by Schubert, Janáček, Stravinsky and Kreisler. With his regular duo partner, pianist Yekwon Sunwoo – a fellow alumnus of Philadelphia’s prestigious Curtis Institute – Beilman explores a multitude of colours and expressive possibilities, evoking them with the finest technical nuances.
Manhattan-native drummer Tony Moreno was born into and for music, his mother, Nina Dunkel Moreno, a noted harpist, pianist and educator. Oh, and he received his first drum kit at ten-years old from… Elvin Jones who became his early mentor and teacher. Moreno has had a long and storied career, filled with memories and mementos, many of the latter lost when Hurricane Sandy made East Coast landfall in October 2012. After losing his studio, library, and trove of his mother's musical memorabilia, The 55 Bar (55 Christopher St. (Sixth/Seventh Avenue) New York City, in the heart of Greenwich Village) offered Moreno a monthly residence for his quintet. It was during this period of rebuilding that Moreno conceived and assembled the two-disc Short Stories.
Workin' is the third in a series of four featuring the classic Miles Davis Quintet: Davis (trumpet), John Coltrane (tenor sax), Red Garland (piano), and Philly Joe Jones (drums). Like its predecessors Cookin' and Relaxin', Workin' is the product of not one – as mythology would claim – but two massively productive recording sessions in May and October of 1956, respectively…
The Manhattan Jazz Quintet have been an on-again, off-again collective of New York City-based musicians who primarily record for the Japanese market. Co-founding members David Matthews (piano and arranger) and trumpeter Lew Soloff are still on hand, though the remainder of the group on this occasion consists of tenor saxophonist Andy Snitzer, bassist Charnett Moffett, and drummer Victor Lewis.