Classical Music Home

Welcome to Naxos Records

Keyword Search
 Classical Music Home > Naxos Album Reviews

Album Reviews

See latest reviews of other albums...

Stephen Estep
American Record Guide, March 2017

Almost every piece of [Schulhoff’s] impresses me from the first hearing. The Sextet begins with a dense gallop, and then there’s a pause before a mournful, rocking theme takes over; the third part takes full advantage of the thick textures a sextet can produce. The whole movement is a thrilling mystery.

The Second Violin Sonata is a well-cut gem, fluid and attractive. It has a French lightness to it, and the first movement, Allegro Impetuoso, is intently playful. …The finale is consistently good-natured and harmonically adventurous while staying tonally grounded.

The Duo for violin and cello is fanciful and imaginative, several steps above commonplace duo writing. The passages in the Moderato with harmonics are especially ingenious. The ‘Zingaresca’ has some astounding left-hand pizzicato work for the violin; in other places, the interplay is so well scored that the two instruments seem as one. © 2017 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Erik Levi
BBC Music Magazine, March 2017

…the stellar soloists featured here certainly play the music with great conviction and the CD offers a good introduction to a prodigiously talented composer. © 2017 BBC Music Magazine

Rob Cowan
Gramophone, January 2017

No praise is too high for Spectrum Concerts Berlin, who spare no effort in bringing Schulhoff freshly to life. In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find a more winning introduction to his output, which is also beautifully recorded. © 2017 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

Bob Stevenson
MusicWeb International, December 2016

Eldar Nebolsin is the pianist and he is given an ideal recording to go with his magnificent playing of these sometimes very challenging pieces.

…this is a very fine disc (especially at bargain price) and certainly my disc of the month. © 2016 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Alexandra Maria Dielitz
BR-Klassik, December 2016

Four very different pieces of chamber music by Schulhoff from the 1920s appear on this album. These are a spectacular discovery, due in part to the interpretation of these works by the ensemble Spectrum Concerts, which has been described as “the silverware of Berlin’s concert scene”. © 2016 BR-Klassik

David Denton
David's Review Corner, October 2016

Today we can view the music of the Czech-born composer, Erwin Schulhoff, on its own merits, divorced from the fact his life was cut short by the Germans in 1942. A highly gifted pianist, he had been musically educated in Germany, and numbered Debussy and Reger among his composition mentors, the present disc collecting together his chamber music written between 1924 and 1927. That he was well aware of the Second Viennese School is evident throughout the disc, but he used those influences only as an extension to music written in the late nineteenth century. So in the String Sextet from 1924 we have melodic invention coloured by atonality, his sense of rhythmic exploration keeping his music interesting to conservative ears, the Burlesca movement, owing something to Stravinsky’s Le sacre du printemps, the work’s ending drifting into an uneasy silence. The Violin Sonata was dedicated to Janáček, the adventurous harmonic nature of the score mirroring his famous predecessor. Often seemingly in two differing works, the performers go their own way, the four short movements framed in spiky intensity. The Violin and Cello Duo is a more ‘tough nut to crack’, its passages of austere atonality relieved by the energising Zingaresca second movement. Finally the type of ‘naughty’ look at Jazz hugely popular in Paris during the time he spent there, here played with gay abandon by the pianist, Eldar Nebolsin. Throughout the performances of the multi-national Spectrum Concerts Berlin is superb, with particular mention of the immaculate intonation of the Russian violinist, Boris Brovtsyn, in the extreme technical challenges of the Violin Sonata. An immaculately recorded product of German Radio. © 2016 David’s Review Corner

Lynn René Bayley
The Art Music Lounge, September 2016

…the musicians of Spectrum Concerts Berlin play with both infallible technical skill and tremendous energy. …This is clearly the work of a great musical imagination, and I can’t imagine it being played any better than it is here. © 2016 The Art Music Lounge Read complete review

Naxos Records, a member of the Naxos Music Group