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Simon Van Holen – Pro Contra! Works for Bassoon & Contrabassoon (2016) [24bit FLAC]

Simon Van Holen - Pro Contra! Works for Bassoon & Contrabassoon (2016) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Simon Van Holen
Album: Pro Contra! Works for Bassoon & Contrabassoon
Genre: Classical
Year: 2016
Tracks: 15
Duration: 01:08:12
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 3.39 GB
Label: Challenge Classics

Bassoon and contrabassoon; a kaleidoscopic rainbow of virtuosity, concentrated into a single CD. Perhaps there’s nothing unique here, but nevertheless it is something quite special and unusual. No one could argue that either of these is among the most popular of ‘classical’ instruments. The contra’s popularity rating would probably be as low as its pitch! And this is no great surprise. One consequence of its extremely deep register and particular sound is that composers have been less than lavish with their contributions to its repertoire. In popularity contests, the bassoon would probably do a little better than its big brother, though it would still be unlikely to reach the top 10. All too often, and despite all of Prokofiev’s best intentions, it gets associated with the grumpy grandfather in Peter and the Wolf. This is fairly disrespectful of the bassoon (to say nothing of grandpa).

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Hannes Minnaar – Faure: Piano Music (2016) [24bit FLAC]

Hannes Minnaar - Faure: Piano Music (2016) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Hannes Minnaar
Album: Faure: Piano Music
Genre: Classical
Year: 2016
Tracks: 28
Duration: 01:16:13
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 3.72 GB
Label: Challenge Classics

Thirteen Nocturnes and as many Barcarolles form the core of the collected output of Gabriel Urbain Faur (1845-1924) for the piano. Night-time meditations, then, along with inspiration drawn from rippling water (the origins of the barcarolle lie in the songs sung by Venetian gondoliers and the word itself comes from the Italian ‘barca’, a boat). Along with some Impromptus, Prludes andother works, one might rapidly gain the impression of a delightful collection of salon music, whose titles may actually display the influence of Chopin (Faur was even to write a Mazurka). But this music is so very much more than pretty salon music. In the intimacy of these genres, Faur succeeded time and again in nothing short of exposing his very soul. And the French composer’s style is entirely his own — original and personal — from the first note to the last.

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Hannes Minnaar, Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, Jan Willem de Vriend – Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 (2017) [24bit FLAC]

Hannes Minnaar, Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, Jan Willem de Vriend - Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3 (2017) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Hannes Minnaar, Netherlands Symphony Orchestra, Jan Willem de Vriend
Album: Beethoven: Piano Concerto No. 3
Genre: Classical
Year: 2017
Tracks: 03
Duration: 00:34:37
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 1.74 GB
Label: Challenge Records

The missing link. Hannes Minnaar’s release of the beginning and end phases (numbers 1 & 2 and 4 & 5 respectively) of Beethoven’s piano concertos is now ‘followed’ by No. 3. It forms a link in another sense as well. The first concertos: replete with youth, sparkling, often even rambunctious; the last two both more mature and more heroic. And Piano Concerto No. 3 then? In part still building on his youth (Beethoven was around 30 when he wrote it), this is the first one where we hear heroism. Might has become the central theme.

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The Hague Philharmonic, Jan Willem de Vriend – Brahms: Serenade No. 1 & Variations on a Theme by Haydn (2016) [24bit FLAC]

The Hague Philharmonic, Jan Willem de Vriend - Brahms: Serenade No. 1 & Variations on a Theme by Haydn (2016) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: The Hague Philharmonic, Jan Willem de Vriend
Album: Brahms: Serenade No. 1 & Variations on a Theme by Haydn
Genre: Classical
Year: 2016
Tracks: 16
Duration: 01:03:08
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 3.17 GB
Label: Challenge Classics

Johannes Brahms was offered a post at the court in 1857. It was an attractive offer — he would be paid a good salary simply for being present during the last three months of the year, conducting choral concerts, performing as a soloist with the court orchestra and playing in the prince’s private chamber ensemble. He would also give piano lessons to the princess. The young Brahms would have plenty of time to compose and, not least, to take long walks in the woods. Here Brahms could relax after a particularly trying and emotional period in his life.

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Christoph Pregardien, Julius Drake – Schubert: Poetisches Tagebuch (2015) [24bit FLAC]

Christoph Pregardien, Julius Drake - Schubert: Poetisches Tagebuch (2015) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Christoph Pregardien, Julius Drake
Album: Schubert: Poetisches Tagebuch
Genre: Classical
Year: 2015
Tracks: 17
Duration: 01:12:29
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 3.62 GB
Label: Challenge Classics

In the years 1819-20, especially, Schubert was frequently drawn to the early poetry of Friedrich Schlegel, who by middle age had morphed from Romantic pantheist to conservative (some would say bigoted) minence grise in Viennese literary circles. Im Walde (which appeared after Schubert’s death under the title Waldes-Nacht) is a darkly ecstatic paean to the numinous powers of the forest. Filled with mysterious rustlings and murmurings (the ‘Forest Murmurs’ of Siegfried are already in view), and picturesque details – say, the lightning flashes and growling thunder in verse two – this torrential outpouring is Schubert at his most exalted and visionary.

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Christoph & Julian Pregardien, Michael Gees – Father and Son (2014) [24bit FLAC]

Christoph & Julian Pregardien, Michael Gees - Father and Son (2014) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Christoph & Julian Pregardien, Michael Gees
Album: Father and Son
Genre: Classical
Year: 2014
Tracks: 28
Duration: 01:13:51
Quality: Digital eXtreme Definition FLAC Stereo 24bit/352,8kHz
Size: 3.47 GB
Label: Challenge Classics

Both tenors display family traits of appealing mellifluousness and impeccable musicality. Together they communicate a sense of something homely, of improvisation and of singing for pure enjoyment…Gees, himself responsible for some of the arrangements, contributes excellent accompaniment throughout. – Gramophone Magazine – March 2015

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Bojan Cicic, The Illyria Consort – Carbonelli: Sonate da camera, Nos. 1-6 (2017) [24bit FLAC]

Bojan Cicic, The Illyria Consort - Carbonelli: Sonate da camera, Nos. 1-6 (2017) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Bojan Cicic, The Illyria Consort
Album: Carbonelli: Sonate da camera, Nos. 1-6
Genre: Classical
Year: 2017
Tracks: 23
Duration: 01:03:33
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/48kHz
Size: 744.21 MB
Label: Delphian

In certain respects, Giovanni Stefano Carbonelli does not quite fit the eighteenth-century mould. For a neo-Corellian, he is unusually fond of complexity, both technical and compositional, and also unusually open to other contemporary influences, such as those of Handel and Vivaldi. But the quality of his music speaks for itself virtuosic and joyously melodic, these six chamber sonatas had a huge impact on Delphian producer Paul Baxter.Carbonelli’s difficulty has ensured that his work is seldom played, but early-music rising star Bojan Cicic makes sure we have no sense of that as he and his Illyria Consort colleagues champion these groundbreaking compositions with exuberant confidence. Bojan Cicic is leader of Floreligium and frequently guest directs the Academy of Ancient Music and European Union Baroque Orchestra. He founded The Illyria Consort to explore rare repertoire of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. This is their first recording.

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Camille Thurman – Inside the Moment (2017) [24bit FLAC]

Camille Thurman - Inside the Moment (2017) [24bit FLAC] Download

Artist: Camille Thurman
Album: Inside the Moment
Genre: Jazz
Year: 2017
Tracks: 07
Duration: 00:49:14
Quality: High-Fidelity FLAC Stereo 24bit/192kHz
Size: 1.46 GB
Label: Chesky Records

The inaugural release of the new Virtual Audio Series from Chesky Records, this album was recorded in front of a live audience at Rockwood Music Hall in the SoHo neighborhood of Manhattan, using a single binaural microphone. This technique places the listener in the middle of a live show. If you didn’t know any better, you’d swear you can smell the perfume of the young lady seated to your left.

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