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Nigel Simeone
International Record Review, April 2015

[This is] not only extremely entertaining but also a fine memorial to a much-missed publisher.

…not to be missed by enterprising collectors. © 2015 International Record Review



Peter Dickinson
Gramophone, March 2015

Everything well recorded. © 2015 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone



David Denton
David's Review Corner, October 2014

A larger than life personality in London’s musical life, Malcolm Smith bequeathed a sum of money to make a disc of British music that he so assiduously championed. His years at the music publisher, Boosey and Hawkes, first brought me into contact with him, our meetings always a joy when talking to someone who was so devoted to the many British composers he could describe as his personal friends. They all came to the party he gave on his retirement, Robin Holloway composing the Grand Heroical March for the occasion to be played by six hands at one piano. It was a joke, as it was neither grand or heroical, the march moving at Malcolm’s stately gait, though embedded into the work was quotations from his favourite music. We stay in the world of fun for the grandiose fantasy on tunes from Gilbert & Sullivan’s spooky operetta, Ruddigore, here played by its creator, Leslie Howard. More serious fare comes from the musicologist, critic and composer, Robert Matthew-Walker. His Piano Sonata uses Hamlet as the backdrop, picturing moods rather than particular moments in Shakespeare’s play. In style it is a throwback to the late-romantic era, and a highly effective piece. Then if you can imagine Liszt’s B minor sonata being rewritten by Schoenberg, you will have Humphrey Searle’s Piano Sonata. Composed in 1951 it received critical acclaim at the time but has since fallen by the wayside, this being the first modern recording, The magnificent performance comes from the much experienced Julian Jacobson who makes light of its demands. Smith’s love of Handel is recalled with a piano arrangement of his aria, Come, but keep thy wonted state made by Leslie Howard and here played by him. Very good sound quality in a recording made last year. © 2014 David’s Review Corner





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