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Harry van der Wal
Harry’s classical music corner, November 2017

I find all the reasons to love this composer in the works on this disc. The Danish pictures are gorgeous. The projections of these images into music is brilliantly done. I like the clusters of sound he builds up in the strings and brass in ascending steps. And the modernity in the music is invigorating and thrilling. The rhythmical muscular and haunting melodies are a treat. It has all the capacity for introspection and reflects the variety in Danish music. The Symphony is a small miracle too. It has a rustic jollity with its elegant chromatisms and frolicking variations. The melodic and harmonious invention lets you hear a range of expression, neatly crafted and expertly written. The expressive potential is wide and deep. He is a master of rhythm. And a combination of tenderness and exuberance, let’s not forget that. The performance is first rate, as is the recording. © 2017 Harry’s classical music corner

Lee Passarella
Audiophile Audition, October 2012

MARTINU, B.: Revue de cuisine (La) / Harpsichord Concerto / Musique de chambre No. 1 / Les rondes (Hill, Holst Sinfonietta, Simon) 8.572485
RIISAGER, K.: Symphonic Edition, Vol. 1 (Aarhus Symphony, Holten) - Symphony No. 1 / Danish Pictures 8.226146

These two composers have distinguished traditions of nationalistic music behind them, but they both cultivated a more cosmopolitan compositional style.

The most enjoyable work on the disc, Klods Hans, is a sort of cross between Strauss’s Till Eulenspiegel and Malcolm Arnold’s Beckus the Dandipratt…it’s colorful, bumptiously humorous, with mock-military asides from the prominent snare drum—as full of nonstop action as Strauss’s work is, with its highly detailed program.

Comoedie, described as a “prelude to a Danish comedy,” is in the same vein of hustling, bustling good humor.

…Riisager’s Symphony No. 1…demonstrates that his talents did not lie in the symphonic vein.

…there are enough other pleasures here, enthusiastically presented by the very fine Aarhus Symphony Orchestra, to merit an unstinting recommendation. Dacapo’s sound is typically excellent: rich, vibrant, capturing string tone in an especially flattering way. © 2012 Audiophile Audition Read complete review

David Fanning
Gramophone, January 2012

None of these pieces is exactly easy to play, the more so since none is in any orchestra’s repertoire…The Åarhus Symphony Orchestra acquits itself bravely under Bo Holten’s firm direction and, as usual from this source, recording quality and documentation are first-rate. © 2012 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Rob Barnett
MusicWeb International, December 2011

This is a pleasing collection and bodes well for the later volumes. © 2011 MusicWeb International Read complete review

David Hurwitz, November 2011

You might think of Riisager as the Danish Malcolm Arnold, without the bitterness and melodrama. The music is rhythmically vivacious, full of good tunes, and wonderfully scored, even without special coloristic effects.

The performances in this first volume of a projected series of Riisager’s symphonic works are first-rate, and so is the engineering. Bo Holten and his players clearly relish the music’s color and energy, and I can only welcome this release with great enthusiasm and high hopes for the series as a whole.

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