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Brian Reinhart
MusicWeb International, December 2014

This superbly played and even-betterly engineered album belongs in any collection. © 2014 MusicWeb International

Mel Martin
Audiophile Audition, June 2014

The performance by the Liège Symphony of Belgium is an excellent one. Conductor John Neschling…seems to have a natural affinity for the music. The recording is excellent…Respighi’s rich orchestration is well highlighted in this excellent recording.

BIS has given us a fine recording and performance of these two pieces. There is a lot to like here, and it makes me want to seek out some of the other recordings this group has done… © 2014 Audiophile Audition Read complete review

David Hurwitz, May 2014

Neschling’s performance rocks. Exciting numbers like the Tarantella, the Cossack Dance, the Cancan, and the final Galop have tremendous energy, but elegance and swagger too, while the Valse lente and Nocturne ooze a particularly Rossinian brand of unsentimental poetry that no one else quite matches. Respighi’s arrangements, it’s worth stressing, really do make it seem as if the music was composed for orchestra all along. A delightful disc, both musically and sonically. © 2014 Read complete review

Steven A. Kennedy
Cinemusical, May 2014

John Neschling[’s]…approach to the opening movement of the Brazilian piece is a rather languid one, adding about 2 minutes to the overall playing time from that of some performances. It works very well though as the music is so well shaped that it sort of just floats about with ideas appearing like zephyrs. Neschling’s performance restores some of the dramatic qualities of the score. Now it feels more ballet-like and less like an exercise in orchestration. The Liege players are simply amazing and respond to the push and pull of these pieces very well. © 2014 Cinemusical Read complete review

Graham Williams, May 2014

Neschling’s version of the Rossini-Respighi ballet ‘La Boutique Fantasque’…elicits top-drawer playing from his Belgian players and on SACD must now be a clear first choice. …the magnificent sound quality of this BIS disc takes the palm. The sound stage is exceptionally wide and the clarity and crispness of the recording is perfect for demonstrating Respighi’ s translucent orchestration at its most imaginative.

Unreservedly recommended. © 2014 Read complete review

Brian Reinhart
MusicWeb International, May 2014

John Neschling, whose previous Respighi album was an instant classic, returns for more and delivers top-quality results yet again. The Liège orchestra summons up Brazilian sounds better than one could imagine; listen especially to the seductive woodwind solos in the nocturne, and in particular the fruity, playful timbre of the clarinets. The Brazilian-born Neschling must have infused these players with the spirit of his home country’s dances, but the nocturne takes up half the piece, and the amount of color and vibrancy achievable under the light of the moon is a testament to composer and performers.

May there be more Respighi forthcoming from Neschling; after two albums, it’s safe to say he is one of the finest advocates this composer has ever had, delivering all the fireworks and the depth too. © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review

John Broggio, May 2014

A welcome return to the studio from John Neschling in superb accounts of these evocative scores.

Opening proceedings is Impressioni brasiliane…and the results are wonderfully idiomatic. Both the playing and recording are outstanding…The contrast that Respighi, Neschling & his Liege players conjure for the Canzone e Danza is incredible and delivered with a sense of joie de vivre combined with a poise that is joyful to the head and heart. The nonchalance with which the final bars are “thrown away” brings a smile no matter how many times one hears it in these hands.

The same qualities are brought to the main offering, La Boutique fantasque, yet another wonderful score for Diaghilev’s Ballets Russes…The Liege players wear their enormous virtuosity very lightly and Neschling never succumbs to the temptation for bombast…The BIS recording must stake a claim for a great deal of credit for the natural aural picture and wide dynamic range do justice to this delightful score…The Liege players sound as though they are enjoying playing it as much this listener is hearing it. All in all, everything sounds as though it couldn’t (even shouldn’t!) be played in any other way, it really is tremendously exciting in both faster passages and the more reflective numbers. © 2014 Read complete review

Albert Lam
MusicWeb International, April 2014

One of the first things that will catch your attention with this recording is the stunning sound quality…which offers an incredibly dynamic and realistic three-dimensional soundscape. As both of the works on this album showcase the colors and textures of the orchestra, BIS’ exemplary sound engineering truly augments the listening experience.

Neschling’s Belgian forces are in excellent form throughout, the winds being especially commendable for their clarity and intonation. This release is a winner, and you simply won’t find a better sounding recording of these works out there. © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review

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