Donald R Vroon
American Record Guide
, January 2011
This is another Philips reissue on the Newton label. It is exactly the same as Philips 438797, a “duo” issued in 1993. The recordings are from 1972 and 1981 and began life on LPs, where I first heard them and grew to like them.
The cello concertos are warm and rich, with full cello tone. If you like the sheer sound of the instrument, you will be happy. There are other fine recordings, and a favorite cellist may give them more of the personality you are looking for; but I have never needed anything but Walevska. The two cello concertos are great works.
The three violin concertos (in C, A, and G) are more modest pieces—and a bit more primitive—earlier-sounding Haydn. Still, they are thoroughly likeable, and Accardo is a very likeable violinist.
None of this even faintly resembles “period instruments”, and we are sincerely thankful for that. There is a discreet harpsichord, but the one piece where it is pretty strong is—no surprise—the sixth concerto here, the one for violin and harpsichord in F. (Haydn actually wrote it for violin and organ.) Bruno Canino does the honors. It’s not a piece I ever cared for, so I can hardly judge the performance.
The sound in everything was always utterly perfect, so there is certainly no need to replace previous incarnations with this one. But if you don’t know these recordings or these pieces, you will soon find out why some of us have had this in our collections for years.