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Infodad.com, September 2019

Sousa wrote music of symphonic complexity and sometimes of symphonic quality to be played by his band, and he frequently had the band perform his own arrangements of works originally written for full symphony orchestra—to surprisingly good effect, as in his handling of bits of Rossini and Wagner as heard on the 19th entry in Naxos’ excellent Sousa series conducted by Keith Brion. One thing this series does is to show just how good the various bands Brion conducts are, whether they are professional ensembles, military groups or, as in this case, student bands. There is nothing short of professional in the way the Royal College of Music Wind Orchestra handles the material on this disc—and a delightful selection of music it is, too. © 2019 Infodad.com Read complete review



Records International, August 2019

And on and on we go… Royal College of Music Wind Orchestra; Keith Brion. © 2019 Records International



Lark Reviews, July 2019

I wonder just how many cds we are going to get in this series? Actually, I hope it goes on and on for they are all equally and thoroughly enjoyable. The two Humoresques are particularly captivating. On the 5.15 is a lament for late trains and The Band Came Back riffs on popular songs of the period. Alongside these are arrangements of Turkey in the Straw and the more substantial Second Fantasia from El Capitan. Totally engaging and a joy to listen to. © 2019 Lark Reviews



David Denton
David's Review Corner, July 2019

Having now arrived at volume 19 of Sousa’s complete ’Music for Wind Band’, the series having been devised by the Sousa expert and conductor, Keith Brion. It signals that we are now reaching the conclusion, many of the tracks appearing in newly edited performing versions made for this release, Brion also adding the informed booklet notes. Outside of his requirement to supply music for the American military band, Sousa was active in the theatre with opera, operetta, musicals, excerpts and selections for use by wind band created both by Sousa and others. So we open in the world of the musical El Capitan, with a selection from the operetta The Bride Elect from the disc’s Producer, Mike Purton. The booklet note leaves us guessing why he wrote the Non-Committal Declarations, but for the fun of the story of the commuter who missed the 5.15 train is explicitly couched in words and in snippets from popular songs. A rousing trombone solo in The Fighting Race leads to the disc’s most extended track, The Band Came Back, a graphic story of how the band had to start a concert when they were minus their conductor—Sousa! Finally two short pieces, the Sheep and Goat being a folk melody written down by David Guion and arranged for band by Sousa. The playing of London’s Royal College of Music Wind Orchestra, directed by Brion, is both enthusiastic and of high quality. Almost all are World Premiere Recordings and are a ’must have’ for Sousa aficionados. © 2019 David’s Review Corner





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