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Robert A Moore
American Record Guide, September 2016

Koukl has supplied a great service to anyone interested in Slovak music through his tireless efforts to find and edit Martinů’s music. Mr Bauman named him “an ideal Martinů interpreter”, and his accompaniment here is sturdy and authoritative. © 2016 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Grego Applegate Edwards
Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review, July 2016

Mezzo-soprano Jana Hrochová shows exemplary expressive power without a hint of cloying sentimentality; Giorgio Koukl provides poetically pianistic accompaniment of the highest order.

The performances are excellent. Recommended. © 2016 Gapplegate Classical-Modern Music Review Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, May 2016

In the multitude of works that Bohuslav Martinů left to posterity, he seemed incapable of separating the wheat from the chaff leaving that task to the listener. This fourth and final volume of his songs concentrates on the lengthy song cycle, Nove slovenske pisne (New Slovak Songs), a collection that came as a result of being sent by the Czechoslovak State to collect folk songs, the thirty that he notated were essentially brief and mostly undeveloped melodies, some lasting just a few seconds. They covered a wide range of subjects, but were essentially of a rural background, many relating to pretty young ladies. But what do we make of such a collector who then adds his own and often sophisticated accompaniments to remove it from its origins? Many composers have fallen into the trap before him, and at least it makes the songs commercially attractive, and often reflect the Slovak folk instrument, the cymbalom, a point here particularly made by Giorgio Koukl. Unless you speak the language, you will certainly need the texts and translations that can be downloaded from the Naxos website, as the booklet notes tell us nothing of their content. They are sung by the Czech mezzo, Jana Hrochová, who brings vitality to the faster and jolly songs... World premiere recordings of Tri panny za svetle noci (The Three Virgins) and Rikadla (Nursery Rhymes) complete the disc, the simple little children songs being very effective. Excellent playing from Koukl, the recording nicely balanced. © 2016 David’s Review Corner





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