Music Reviews
Classical Music Reviews - Part 1 - January, 1996

By C.D. Rusett


  ***** Extraordinary
  **** Good
  *** Acceptable
  ** Mediocre
  * Poor


Ancient Echoes
Alexander Sedov directs Chorovaya Akademia
Distributed in USA by RCA Victor Red Seal
9026-68055-2, CD-Single
$16.95, 63:25

Performance: starstarstarstarstar
Audio Quality: starstarstarstar

The glorious blending of perfectly harmonized male voices is balm for any soul in this recording by Russia's internationally acclaimed vocal ensemble, Chorovaya Akademia, directed by Alexander Sedov. Recorded in Germany November 1-10, 1993, these a cappella compositions transcend time and language, imparting fresh beauty to classic works of great Russian spiritualist composers: Bortnyansky, Tchaikovsky, Ruitov and others. Chesnokov's "Veriu"(I Believe) and Nikolovksy's "Vo iskhode israileve"(As Israel departed Egypt) are guaranteed to exhilarate, quite independent of religious inspiration. This CD will have an extraordinary "shelf life," as repeated listening heightens the enjoyment.

C. D. Rusett

Tuba! A Six-Tuba Musical Romp
Gerhard Meinl's Tuba Sextet
Distributed in USA by Angel
CDC 54729, CD-Single
$16.95, 67:51

Performance: starstarstarstar
Audio Quality: starstarstarstar

Six tuba virtuosi romp through four centuries of music. Their skilled performances of works by Bach, Couperain, di Lasso, and Mozart suggest these composers would have been inspired to write expressly for the instrument, had it been invented. The most intriguing and supremely pleasing music, however, is composed for the tuba by the performers themselves. Enrique Crespo's "Three Milongas" transform the tuba to a lyric instrument, and Jonathon Sass's "Meltdown"(1991) is modern, melodic and playful, especially the innovative nod to Dies Irae. There are excellent renditions of three tuba "classics" for the purists as well.

C. D. Rusett

Copyright 1995, 1996, 1997 Secrets of Home Theater & High Fidelity
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