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Penguin Guide, January 2009

The Michael Thompson Wind Quintet offer the piece with an enterprising choice of coupling and give an expressive account. The playing is wonderfully accomplished and sensitive…



Steven E. Ritter
American Record Guide, October 2000

"The Michael Thompson Wind Quintet (formerly the Barry Tuckwell Quintet - he only recently relinquished the reins) gives a ...mainstream, classically driven performance. Barber's Teflon Summer Music is beautifully executed...

"Lars-Erik Larson's evocative, lovely Divertimento Four Tempos is a wonderful tone poem for winds that paints a picture of whatever you want it to be. The notes draw reference to Sibelius, but I don't hear the same sort of bleak desolation in this work that Sibelius revels in. Whatever the non-musical associations, its four varied movements are an unalloyed pleasure to listen to. I don't know why this isn't recorded and played more often.

"Capping a wonderful recital is Janacek's bittersweet, old man's love poem called Youth, for wind quintet plus bass clarinet - an instrument that adds just the right amount of soulful mellowness to this forlorn work. Stricken late in life by love for a young woman (unrequited), Jana?ek makes a self-tribute for his 70th birthday to his own youth using melodies heard when he was a choirboy in Brno. The rich, infatuated scoring proves a perfect parallel to his own blissful brooding. The Thompson Quintet captures every pleasing moment - made even sweeter by the bargain price."



Rad Bennett
ClassicsToday.com, August 2000

"For a wind quintet to be successful, each player must be a virtuoso soloist who also is capable of being an ensemble player. The musicians in this quintet fill that bill admirably. On this CD they play a program of 20th century favorites for five wind players--six in the case of the Janacek. The compositions are largely happy works. The opening 'March' of the Hindemith is boisterous and upbeat, followed by four movements largely in the same vein. The Barber is more ruminative and romantic, along the lines of the composer's better known works, and the Larsson, except for a somewhat chilly third movement, paints a picture of the sunnier side of Scandinavia. The Janacek, written near the end of his life, is autobiographical, a portrait of the composer's own youth which he had recaptured in an infatuation with a younger woman. The Michael Thompson Woodwind Quintet captures every nuance in these compositions in performances that are virtually free of fault. The sound is more distant than usual for a recording of a small group, but it's exceptionally crisp and clear without any irritating clacking of keys, an effect that often mars more close-up recordings of winds."



Anthony Burton
BBC Music Magazine, June 2000

"On Naxos, the British quintet led by the horn player Michael Thompson plays Hindemith's entertaining 'Little Chamber Music' and Samuel Barber's rhapsodic Summer Music, together with a less familiar but very fresh 'divertimento' by the Swede Lars-Erik Larsson; and it co-opts a bass clarinet for Janacek's extraordinary Youth, a reminiscence of childhood written at the age of 70. An attractive programme, and the performances are accomplished and affectionate..."






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10:42:17 PM, 30 October 2014
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