Claudio Abbado, Lucerne Festival Orchestra – Bruckner: Symphony No 9 (2014) [Qobuz 24-48]

Claudio Abbado, Lucerne Festival Orchestra – Bruckner: Symphony No 9 (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/48 kHz | Digital Booklet | 614 MB
Genre: Classical | Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz

In January 2014, music lovers worldwide were saddened to learn that Claudio Abbado had passed away. Deutsche Grammophon feels immensely blessed and proud to be releasing together with Accentus Music Bruckner’s Symphony No. 9 in D Minor, which was recorded as part of Abbado’s final concert.

The concert received very positive reviews from the press:

“Mr. Abbado led an otherworldly account of Bruckner’s 9th Symphony. Never have I heard as magisterial and moving performance of the work as that given by the 80-year-old maestro and his fabulous Lucerne Festival Orchestra.” (Wall Street Journal)

The most recent Abbado / Mozart release featuring Martha Argerich has not only received critical acclaim worldwide, but did really well commercially: the album entered the pop charts in Italy at 16 and is still in the German classical charts at number 4.

With 40,000 units sold today, it is one of DG’ s bestselling core classical albums of 2014 & is still going strong.

This new and unique Bruckner album has a real potential amongst the core classical audiences worldwide.

To support the release, DG has filmed an interview with Sid McLauchlan who has been Claudio Abbado’s DG producer for many years.

The concert was recorded by Accentus Music during the 75th Lucerne Festival in 2013 with the Lucerne Festival Orchestra.

This release is a fitting tribute to an irreplaceable artist, who was one of the greatest conductors and most inspiring musical figures of our time.

With this record, Deutsche Grammophon and Accentus Music wish to pay tribute to the maestro and honour what would have been his 81st birthday at the end of June

Composer: Anton Bruckner
Conductor: Claudio Abbado
Orchestra/Ensemble: Lucerne Festival Orchestra

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Paul Watkins, Huw Watkins – British Works for Cello and Piano Vol. 1 (2012) [eClassical 24-96]

Paul Watkins, Huw Watkins – British Works for Cello and Piano Vol. 1 (2012)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Digital Booklet | 1.15 GB
Genre: Classical | Official Digital Download – Source: eClassical

In the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries many British composers produced superb works for cello and piano, but few of these actually made their way into the general repertoire. Here we have four very different works by four very distinct musical personalities, performed by the cellist Paul Watkins, an exclusive Chandos artist, accompanied by his brother, Huw Watkins.

Composer: Charles Hubert Parry, Frederick Delius, Granville Bantock, John Foulds
Performer: Conductor] Paul [Cello Watkins, Huw Watkins, Paul Watkins

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Kavakos, Nagy, Chailly – Brahms: Violin Concerto, Hungarian Dances; Bartok (2013) [LINN 24-96]

Kavakos, Nagy, Chailly – Brahms: Violin Concerto, Hungarian Dances; Bartok (2013)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Digital Booklet | 1.37 GB
Genre: Classical | Official Digital Download – Source: Linn records

Leonidas Kavakos tackles a pillar of the violin repertoire in a disc that establishes him as a concerto soloist for Decca Classics. His first concerto disc for Decca features the Brahms Violin Concerto, for which he is joined by one of the world’s greatest orchestras and conductors, the Gewandhausorchester Leipzig and Riccardo Chailly. Leonidas is also accompanied by pianist Péter Nagy for Brahms’ timeless Hungarian Dances (No.s 1, 2 ,6 and 11) and Bartók’s energetic Rhapsodies and Romanian Folk Dances – two great composers hugely influenced by Hungarian folk music.

Richly charismatic music in superbly spirited performances by musicians who have this repertoire in their blood.

Composer: Johannes Brahms, Béla Bartók
Performer: Leonidas Kavakos, Péter Nagy
Conductor: Riccardo Chailly
Orchestra/Ensemble: Leipzig Gewandhaus Orchestra

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Bombadil – Tarpits and Canyonlands (2009/2014) [HDTracks 24-96]

Bombadil – Tarpits and Canyonlands (2009/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Time – 45:28 minutes | 708 MB
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front cover
Genre: Alternative

Bombadil is a four-piece band from Durham, North Carolina with guitar, bass, piano, and drums as their primary instruments. Their music is best described as folk-pop. The band are known for their creative and heartfelt lyrics, quirky and diverse sound, and engaging live show.

Bombadil is as much a family as a band, a collective of like-minded friends who just happen to be talented and innovative musicians and multi-instrumentalists. Like all families, they’ve had their share of ups and downs, break ups and reunions, but the long road they¹ve traveled together has made their bond closer and their music more emotional and intimate. Tarpits and Canyonlands is the North Carolina folk-pop band’s second album that was released in July of 2009.

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Bobby Hutcherson – Linger Lane (1975/2014) [HDTracks 24-192]

Bobby Hutcherson – Linger Lane (1975/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz | Time – 31:29 minutes | 1,21 GB
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front cover
Genre: Jazz

Linger Lane was recorded by vibraphonist/marimbist Bobby Hutcherson and released in 1975. It was produced by Jerry Peters, Keg Johnson, and Jim Shifflett.

A beautiful later Blue Note album from vibist Bobby Hutcherson – a set recorded after his famous association with Harold Land, but with a groove that’s wonderfully soulful in a whole different way! Bobby plays marimbas instead of vibes this time around, and he’s working with his own arrangements for a slightly larger group – one that has some sweet fusion overtones, and these wonderful mellow funk inflections – so that even the mellow cuts have this warmly glowing, ultra-soulful sound that’s mighty nice – a bit like some of the work from Gene Harris around the same time. Other players include Jerry Peters on Fender Rhodes, who also helped out with the arrangements – plus Harvey Mason on drums and Ernie Watts on reeds – and a few tracks feature sweet backing vocals from The Waters. The highlight here is a nice moody extended version of ‘People Make The World Go Round’, but all cuts are great, and titles include ‘Silver Rondo’, ‘Manzanita’, ‘NTU’, and his dark cover of ‘Theme From MASH“.

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Blandine Verlet – Francois Couperin: Pieces de clavecin, Harpsichord pieces (2012) [eClassical 24-88,2]

Blandine Verlet – François Couperin: Pièces de Clavecin, Harpsichord pieces (2012)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/88,2 kHz | Time – 116:29 minutes | 2,16 GB
Official Digital Download – Source: | Digital booklet

Blandine Verlet is one of the last harpsichordist living legends. After some years of absence, she joins Aparté label with a program dedicated to François Couperin, recorded with a sumptuous 1751 Henri Hemsch harpsichord that she already used for her last recording: Variations Goldberg (1993).

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Billy Childs – Map To The Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro (2014) [HDTracks 24-44,1]

Billy Childs – Map To The Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 61:22 minutes | 668 MB
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front cover
Genre: Jazz

When Billy Childs was 11 years old, his older sister introduced him to the work of Rock & Roll Hall of Fame singer-songwriter Laura Nyro. Her blend of Broadway inspired melodies, jazz improvisation and socially conscious lyrics have stayed with him. Now Billy has returned to his early source of inspiration, conceiving and orchestrating the new album, Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro, which features an incredible range of musicians who join him in interpreting her narratives.

A technically adroit pianist with an ear for sensitive, emotive accompaniment, Billy Childs has built a career primarily around backing other artists, including trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, vocalist Dianne Reeves, and trumpeter Chris Botti. Although he’s recorded a number of superb solo dates, on 2014′s Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro, Childs once again sets himself just outside of the spotlight as he gathers various musical friends to pay homage to his longtime idol, the late singer/songwriter Laura Nyro. Having discovered Nyro’s emotive and lyrically thoughtful genre-crossing folk recordings in his teens while studying jazz and classical music at the University of Southern California’s Community School for the Performing Arts, Childs would eventually get to work with Nyro prior to her death from ovarian cancer in 1997. One gets the sense that in an ideal world, Childs might have recorded this album with Nyro herself as a kind of retrospective anthology. In lieu of that poignant fantasy, here Childs, along with producer and former USC Community Schools classmate Larry Klein, have reinterpreted a handful of Nyro’s songs, taking an ambitious, cross-genre approach that balances the intimate folk of her original recordings with a layered jazz and symphonic pop sound. Along with the aforementioned Reeves and Botti, Childs is joined by such like-minded luminaries as vocalist Renee Fleming, cellist Yo-Yo Ma, singer/songwriter Rickie Lee Jones, bassist/vocalist Esperanza Spalding, saxophonist Wayne Shorter, and others. Ultimately, with Map to the Treasure, Childs doesn’t simply reimagine Nyro’s songs as elevate them in a spiritual and heartfelt celebration of her life and music.

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Bill Evans – Empathy (1962/2014) [HDTracks 24-96]

Bill Evans – Empathy (1962/2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/96 kHz | Time – 35:12 minutes | 775 MB
Official Digital Download – Source: | Front cover
Genre: Jazz

Empathy is the album that resulted when the Bill Evans Trio and Shelly Manne & His Men were sharing the bill at New York’s Village Vanguard. A session at Rudy Van Gelder’s studio was set up, and the trio of Evans, Manne, and Monty Budwig (Manne’s bass player) recorded the album. Because all of the musicians were out of their regular working ensembles, they felt more free to play around with the music and the resulting music is light, free, and relaxed. Songs recorded include Irving Berlin’s “The Washington Twist” and “Let’s Go Back to the Waltz”.

This album came about through a fortuitous convergence of circumstances. Shelly Manne & His Men were appearing at New York’s Village Vanguard, sharing the bill with the Bill Evans Trio. Getting Riverside’s permission to let the pianist participate, Creed Taylor set up a session at Rudy Van Gelder’s studio with Evans and Manne sharing top billing. Manne’s bass player, Monty Budwig, made up the trio. This was a busman’s holiday for Evans, who was freed from the musical parameters he had set for his then-current trio. The result is that his playing seemed lighter, freer, and more relaxed than it had for a while. The album kicks off with a jaunty version of Irving Berlin’s “The Washington Twist” from the unsuccessful Mr. President with Budwig sharing the honors with Evans as much as Manne. Manne spends most of his time driving Evans into more diminished and sharper playing than was usually Evans’ wont. Another relatively unfamiliar Berlin work, “Let’s Go Back to the Waltz,” gives full reign to Evans’ lyricism. The longest tune on the set is an audacious, almost lampooned version of “With a Song in My Heart” with light chordal phrasing that pretty much characterized much of the tone coming from this session. Listening to these three, it’s clear that everyone was having a good time and simply enjoying being relieved of their duties with their regular combos, even if for just one day. Empathy has been reissued by Verve as a CD that also includes another Evans’ goody, A Simple Matter of Conviction.

01 – The Washington Twist
02 – Danny Boy
03 – Let’s Go Back To The Waltz
04 – With A Song In My Heart
05 – Goodbye
06 – I Believe In You

Produced by Creed Taylor.
Recorded August 14, 1962.



Benjamin Grosvenor – Dances (2014) [Highresaudio 24-96]

Benjamin Grosvenor – Dances (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz | Digital Booklet | 1.16 GB
Genre: Classical | Official Digital Download – Source: Highresaudio

Dances is a dazzling display of solo works for piano from Bach to Boogie Woogie; via Chopin, Granados, Albeniz, Scriabin and the Blue Danube. For his second solo album on Decca, Benjamin Grosvenor has assembled a typically imaginative and appealing programme of piano music inspired by the dance form. Shining the spotlight on the music of movement, this album was inspired by a letter from the great pianist-composer Ferruccio Busoni to his pupil Egon Petri proposing a “dance programme” as a theme for Petri’s recitals, a concept Grosvenor expanded on for his Queen Elizabeth Hall debut recital in 2012.

A former Gramophone Young Artist of the Year, Grosvenor will appearing at two BBC Proms in 2014 with a performance of Chopin’s First Piano Concerto with the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra (8th August), followed by a solo recital at Cadogan Hall (1st September). In 2011, he was awarded the honour of opening the BBC Proms Concerts season and was the youngest-ever soloist to perform on the ‘First Night’.

Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach, Frédéric Chopin, Alexander Scriabin, Enrique Granados, …
Performer: Benjamin Grosvenor

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Ben L’Oncle Soul – A Coup De Reves (2014) [Qobuz 24-44,1]

Ben L’Oncle Soul – À Coup De Rêves (2014)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/44,1 kHz | Time – 41:24 minutes | 473 MB
Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Front cover
Genre: R&B, Soul

Ben l’Oncle Soul is a French soul singer with a retro style! Captivated by the organic authenticity of analog sound, Ben plunged into soul in the company of Otis Redding and the stars of Stax & Motown. À Coup De Rêves is his second full-lenght album, released on August 25, 2014 by Motown France.

On À Coup De Rêves, French and English unashamedly join forces. The album’s title song has a remarkable back story. “I was thinking of calling the album Walk The Line, and then that phrase came to me, like an expression that didn’t really exist. I worked myself up into a terrible state writing the song. In the lyrics, there are figures who helped me move forward in life, like Mohammed Ali. He’s in the song, with his fists and smile. For the title, I was hesitating between “Relève-toi” (Get Back Up), “Ton Rêve Avance” (Your Dream Goes On) and “À Coup De Rêves”. Then I did a concert in Geneva. After I performed the song, I asked the audience which one they preferred. They all said, ‘À Coup De Rêves’!

The cover of Al Green’s “Simply Beautiful”, performed with Keziah Jones, is a meeting of two artists on the same quest for truth in sound. Harmonizing all these melodic jewels is the invisible but essential hand of Renaud Létang (Souchon, Jane Birkin, Rocé, Saul Williams, Emilie Simon), who has provided Ben with a balanced mix that underlines the musicians’ work.

Ranging from the epic to the intimately expressive, the 11 tracks reveal the newfound maturity of Ben L’Oncle Soul, an artist who is here to stay. Where some have “swag”, Ben simply has style… along with a natural talent for deep emotions and soul beats. Hallelujah!

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