Tuesday, November 18, 2008


I really ought to do a better job of tracking what I listen to.
  • Conchita Supervia, vol. 3, Marston Records. The inimitable Spanish mezzo, the most charming singer ever, in the third volume of a series of her complete recordings.
  • Franz Schmidt, Symphony No. 2, Neeme Järvi, CSO, Chandos. I missed the recent SFS performances of Schmidt's Fourth, and Jeff Dunn kindly sent me a shrink-wrapped copy of the Second. Thank goodness it's Järvi and not the CSO's former music director, who would have made an overblown hash out of this gorgeous explosion of late Romantic extroversion.
  • Aulis Sallinen, Kullervo, Ulf Söderblom, Finnish National Opera Orchestra and Chorus, Ondine. Sallinen is the best Finnish composer whose work you've never heard. Really. Born in 1935, he's a couple of generations past Sibelius and a generation before the young (ish) Turks, Saariaho, Salonen, and Lindberg. Kullervo derives from a particularly brutal story in Kalevala, the Finnish national epic. The music itself feels ancient, relentless, and epic. Give it a try.
  • Karl Amadeus Hartmann, Complete Symphonies, Rieger, Leitner, Kubelik, Macal; Wergo. Resuming a project I started...uh...in 2007 some time, when my friend Mike lent me his set. Another of the great underperformed symphony cycles of the 20th century.

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