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Following performances at the BBC Proms and throughout the US in 2017, the foursome has already forged a reputation as a hot new property in jazz, combining experiences and vitality to create unforgettable performances.Recorded at Abbey Road in London over one night, the album captures a moment in time, and gives us the opportunity to eavesdrop on an extraordinary session of music-making.James Morrison himself tells the story:My quartet was recording an album at the fabled Abbey Road Studios in London with the BBC Concert Orchestra and Peter Cobbin, one of the best engineers in the world. It doesn’t get any better than that, and my only regret was that we didn’t have time to record the quartet on their own while we were there. The orchestra recordings were all day and we had gigs in the evening – so no time, unless you go into the studio between midnight and dawn…This was one of those sessions where the band are relaxed and in the mood to play, the lights are low and the vibe is good, the daytime hustle of a big studio has ended and only the musicians and engineer are there to hear the music. We simply called tunes we felt like playing – some standards, some originals, some ballads, some swingers… All off-the-cuff and all with a sense of just capturing how we were playing at the time.Musicians evolve, planned projects come and go, but this is simply a snapshot of a band on the road, captured mid-tour, almost as though you were listening in on a late-night jam session… Actually, you are.
Pianist Sally Whitwell returns to the music of minimalist master Philip Glass in her latest album on ABC Classics, presenting a monumental and immersive journey for solo piano.In 2011, Whitwell won the ARIA Award for Best Classical Album for her collection of Glass’ music Mad Rush. Since then, her relationship with the composer has deepened, centring around the Etudes – his largest and most significant work for solo piano. After hearing Mad Rush, in 2013 Glass asked Whitwell to give the world-premiere of the Etudes, alongside the composer, at the Perth International Arts Festival; he subsequently invited her to perform them again in New York and Los Angeles. This album is a result of that close collaboration.The Etudes – 20 in all, collected together into two Books – were written over the course of two decades between 1991 and 2012, and chart the musical development of one of the most significant composers of our generation. ‘In the beginning of the series, we hear something much closer to the angry young man, rebelling against the academic musical establishment by writing and performing his signature repetitive structures that pull you into an unique meditative space (if you let them). By the end of the series we hear a much more peaceful, pragmatic human. Gone is the angry young man, and in its place a kind of lyricism that aches with the wisdom of life experience,’ Whitwell suggests.The music is deeply personal for Whitwell, too, who memorised every note of the ninety-minute set. She recalls the first time playing to Glass, the two of them alone in the room: ‘He listened politely, then gave me a one-man round of applause at the end. “Your playing has real poetry in it,” he said. I remember thinking at that moment “I can now die happy”’.The album was recorded by Tonmeister Virginia Read, who won the ARIA Award for Best Engineer for her previous collaboration with Sally Whitwell.Track Listing:PHILIP GLASS (born 1937)Etudes for Solo PianoCD 1: Book 1 Etudes Nos. 1–10CD 2: Book 2 Etudes Nos. 11–20Sally Whitwell piano
It was common practice in the 19th century for composer to publish their music in versions for multiple instruments, increasing their audience and appeal. Taking inspiration from this, Benedict and Tedeschi present a range of works ideally suited to the rich tone of the viola – the ‘melancholy dreamer’, as Berlioz described it.The album opens with Schubert’s Arpeggione Sonata, written for a now-obsolete six-string instrument. The sunny virtuosity of the music (increased by playing it on an instrument of four rather than six strings) is tempered by Schubert’s trademark aching melancholy.At the heart of the album sits a suite of movements from Schubert’s Winterreise. In Benedict’s own words, “this concert suite tells a condensed version of the song cycle’s story, expressing all the desperation, false hope and final resignation as its protagonist journeys away from his doomed love affair.”Two works by Robert Schumann, originally for violin and piano, close out the album: an ardent and wistful Intermezzo, and the characterful late Sonata Op.105.In his 20s, Roger Benedict was appointed the principal viola of the Philharmonia Orchestra in London, before leaving to devote more time to solo performance and teaching. He relocated to Australia in 2003, and is the principal viola of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. Simon Tedeschi has been hailed as ‘true greatness’ (Sydney Morning Herald). He tours and performs globally at prestigious recital venues and with leading orchestras; for ABC Classics he has made acclaimed recordings of music by Gershwin, Mussorgsky, Richard Strauss and more.The artwork for the album cover and booklet is by Loribelle Spirovski, a Sydney-based Archibald finalist. Track ListingFRANZ SCHUBERT 1797–18181–3. Sonata in A minor, D821 ‘Arpeggione’ for viola and pianoEight Songs from ‘Winterreise’Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict4. Gute Nacht (Good Night)5. Erstarrung (Numbness)6. Auf dem Flusse (On the Stream)7. Irrlicht (Will-o’-the-Wisp)8. Frühlingstraum (A Dream of Springtime)9. Stürmischer Morgen (Stormy Morning)10. Täuschung (Deception)11. Der Wegweiser (The Signpost) ROBERT SCHUMANN 1810–185612. Intermezzo [from the F.A.E. Sonata] for violin and piano, WoO22Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict 13–15. Sonata for piano and violin in A minor, Op. 105Arranged for viola and piano by Roger Benedict Roger Benedict violaSimon Tedeschi piano
An Alpine Symphony is a work of monumental proportions. Depicting the ascent of an Alpine mountainside, from scenes of pastoral beauty to an enormous storm, it calls for over 120 players and lasts over 50 minutes. It was famously the first-ever work to be pressed onto a compact disc, in a recording by Herbert von Karajan and the Berlin Philharmonic.In reviews of the live concert performances from which this recording is taken, The Australian wrote that ‘the Strauss rose with organic fury under Davis’s baton, Night’s opening rumblings kept as jittery, primordial whispers and so heightening the triumphant burst of Sunrise. The 22 movements trace the journey of an alpine ascent and descent, with dramatic changes of scenery and climate along the way, various perils for the expedition team, and the humility-inducing grandeur of the view from the summit. Alert to each imagery shift and adroitly balancing the vast orchestral forces before him, Davis kept intensity bubbling away, even as textures shifted unpredictably from massed splendour to simple sonorities.’A narrative of a very different kind is found in Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks, this time the misadventures of a German peasant: disrupting a market, chasing girls, mocking professors – and, ultimately, being hanged for his misdemeanours. This work finds the MSO’s musicians at their most virtuosic, with many of the players called on to depict the vivid characters we encounter in the story.The MSO’s Strauss series was launched in 2014 with a major European tour including the BBC Proms and Concertgebouw, and has so far included Four Last Songs with Erin Wall, Ein Heldenleben, Four Symphonic Interludes, Also Sprach Zarathustra and Don Juan. The recordings have won significant acclaim from the international press, with BBC Music Magazine describing Also Sprach as ‘a benchmark recording’.1. Till Eulenspiegels lustige Streiche (Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks), Op. 282–23. Eine Alpensinfonie (An Alpine Symphony), Op. 64Melbourne Symphony OrchestraDale Barltrop concertmasterSir Andrew Davis conductorRecorded live in Hamer Hall, Arts Centre Melbourne
From the creator of Swoon comes an enthralling introduction to the great love music of the classical composers. Experience music from 10 composers, from the passionate arias of Puccini and Mozart to the intimacy of Satie’s Gymnopedies and Chopin’s Nocturnes, and the extraordinary orchestral colours of Schumann, Debussy and Brahms. This is music at its most eloquent, written to seduce, to capture the ineffable highs and – perhaps most often – to overcome the excruciating blows of love. As Lawrence himself puts it, ‘the sounds of these composers are a poignant counterpoint to the tales of their stuttering dreams. Therein lie the real truths of these lives – and ours. For when it comes to putting a little love into your day, classical music does the best job of all.’This 2-CD set accompanies the major new book Symphony of Seduction by ABC Classic FM’s Christopher Lawrence.
’Mother’ sees the ARIA Award-nominated duo team up for the third time, following on from the internationally acclaimed albums ‘Black Peak’ (2016) and ‘Ghosts’ (2014).A passion for exploration comes naturally to Xylouris White. Across Mother’s nine tracks, they nurture fecund growths from the spaces between their instruments. Sometimes the songs drive with an invigorating urgency; sometimes they brood, plead, yearn and lull. The duo seem to discover each other anew at every turn, teasing the songs out from their fluid chemistry with the kind of virtuosity that knows when to listen, accommodate and learn afresh.Produced by long-time collaborator Guy Piccioto (Fugazi), the album has been named to denote 'new life’. As Xylouris says, “’Mother’ is the extension of ’Ghosts’ and ’Black Peak’. Three things, all part of a whole. Goats are mothers, Zeus was raised on Amaltheia's milk, Black Peak is Mother's Earth... Mother Earth is the mother of everything.“ Themes of simplicity and child-like innocence runs through the album.
This specially themed version celebrates Australia Day with all the big names and rising stars of Aussie country (and a few Kiwis as well). Featured artists include Lee Kernaghan, The Wolfe Brothers, Sunny Cowgirls, Caitlyn Shadbolt, Drew McAlister, Adam Brand, Travis Collins and so much more!
Emma Matthews is one of the brightest stars in the antipodean operatic skies. Her voice is pure yet rich, capable of dazzling vocal fireworks but equally able to express the subtlest of moods.In this her debut release on the ABC Classics label, she brings the thrilling beauty of her tone to jewels by Donizetti, Bellini, Gounod, Delibes and Offenbach, taking on some of the iconic soprano roles and proving herself to be a worthy interpreter of the grand tradition.Track Listing1. BERNSTEIN Glitter and Be Gay from Candide2. DELIBES Où va la jeune Hindoue (Bell Song) from Lakmé3. FLOTOW The Last Rose of Summer from Martha4. DONIZETTI Ancor non giunse…Regnava nel silencio…Quando rapito in estasi from Lucia di Lammermoor (with Catherine Carby mezzo-soprano)5. BELLINI Eccomi in lieta vesta…Oh! quante volte from I Capuleti e i Montecchi6. GOUNOD Dieu! Quel frisson court dans mes veines…Amour, ranime mon courage from Roméo et Juliette7. THOMAS A vos jeux…Partagez-vous mes fleurs…Pâle et blonde…La sirène passe et vous entraîne from Hamlet8. OFFENBACH Les oiseaux dans la charmille (Doll Song) from Les Contes d’Hoffmann9. PROCH Deh! torna, mio bene (Theme and Variations)10. BOWMAN Now Touch the Air Softly11. MILLS The Nightingale’s Song from The Love of the Nightingale
The songs are the main feature of the brand-new ABC KIDS music television program of the same name. The children’s series celebrates all of the backstage drama, excitement and preparation of putting on a show! For this album Justine has collaborated with some of Australia’s best songwriters including Tim Rogers, Josh Pyke, Cameron Bruce, Sean Peter and her longstanding writing team Arthur Baysting and Peter Dasent. The album also features special guest musicians and artists such as hip-hop artist Hau Latukefu, musical theatre star Sheridan Harbridge and percussionist Bree Van Reyk.The Justine Clarke Show! embraces a variety of genres from the glam-rock sounds of R.O.C.K and Roll Hey Hey Hey through to the toe-tapping country swagger of Country Music, beat-boxing rhymes of Do Do Do The Helicopter, beautiful instrumentation of The Classical Song, disco fever of Everywhere’s A Dancefloor and ska inspired The Rumpus Room. “I’m a firm believer in the power of music, regardless of genre or style, to inspire and engage children and adults alike. It’s been such a thrill to work with these amazing artists and producers to create an album that has such variety. I’ve truly loved making this record and I hope the whole family enjoys it!” – Justine ClarkeABOUT JUSTINE CLARKE Justine has spent the major part of her life in front of the camera and on stage performing in productions such as Red Dog True Blue, The Time Of Our Lives, Tangle, Look Both Ways and most recently Muriel’s Wedding The Musical.She launched her successful children’s career in 2005, with the defining music release, I Like To Sing and has since proven herself to be an intuitive and successful creator and producer of children’s content. Her accolades include ARIA nominated albums I Like To Sing, Songs To Make You Smile, Great Big World, Pyjama Jam! and the ARIA Award winning Best Children’s Album, A Little Day Out; platinum selling DVDs, four children’s books, popular programmed music clips and sell out national tours. Justine co-created the original Ta Da! concept for TV, to capture the fun and excitement of making music and performing.
This live recording from the Uptown Jazz Café captures Fitzgibbon at his best, performing a selection of original compositions with regular partners Marty Holoubek on bass and Danny Fischer on drums.
Here the Melbourne-based composer turns her versatile creative talent to the instruments of the brass family, with a soulful and charismatic disc featuring leading Australian artists Don Immel (trombone) and Joel Brennan (trumpet), as well as the dynamic line up of Ensemble Three (Immel, Brennan and guitarist Ken Murray).
The Australian Haydn Ensemble, acclaimed for their fresh and vibrant performances of the music of the Classical era, bring their deep knowledge of historical performance techniques to Beethoven’s first and third piano concertos to play them as they would have been first encountered by audiences of Beethoven’s own time: as chamber music, for a small ensemble that could comfortably fit into a private home. In an era without recordings, most music lovers discovered the works of the great composers not by hearing them, but by playing them. These arrangements by Australian scholar Vi King Lim are patterned on the hugely popular chamber editions of Beethoven and Mozart symphonies by London-dwelling Italians Cimador and Masi, which graced the libraries of every music-loving household at the turn of the 19th century.Neal Peres Da Costa performs on a meticulously crafted replica of an 1819 fortepiano by Conrad Graf – maker of one of Beethoven’s own pianos.