Here are some interesting new albums that will be released in March. Stay tuned to Top Ear because we may review some of these albums in due course.
Marc-André Hamelin’s in-progress cycle of Joseph Haydn’s piano sonatas has gone very well, offering exquisite musicality and fidelity to the score (and needless to say Hamelin’s amazing technique). In this new spinoff album Hamelin records Haydn’s three best-loved piano concertos with Les Violons du Roy conducted by Bernard Labadie, and we hope it will maintain the standard of excellence manifest in his previous Haydn recordings.
Two new Klemperer Legacy sets: Klemperer’s Wagner and Strauss, and his Mozart operas. His Die Zauberflöte has widely been regarded as a classic.
Pierre Boulez’s Mahler cycle for DG has had its hits and misses, but overall Boulez’s unique, unsentimental way with the score emphasizing on clarity and cleanliness makes it an interesting cycle. Having conducted all the symphonies, Boulez remade Das Klagende Lied with the Vienna Philharmonic in 2011 (his first one was on Sony with the London Symphony Orchestra), and this release documents that event coupled with Berg’s Lulu Suite. It will be released on 4th March, coinciding with Boulez’s 88th birthday.
Another Boulez release: Sony has put all of Boulez’s Schoenberg–one of his specialties–into a budget 11-CD box, featuring the Ensemble intercontemporain and the BBC Symphony Orchestra. Highlights include his Gurrelieder and…well…most of Schoenberg’s orchestral works you can think of. Under Boulez’s hands, it’s almost quality guaranteed.
Jascha Heifetz and Gregor Piatigorsky gave some legendary concerts, and here they are compiled into a budget, 21-CD box set. Besides some standard fare such as Brahms’ Double Concerto and Dvorak’s Piano Quintet No. 2, there are also a few works off the beaten track, such as Francaix’s String Trio.