Thrilling new keyboard recordings this month: from piano legend Marc-André Hamelin we have wonderfully introspective Debussy Images & Préludes II, award-winning harpsichordist Mahan Esfahani has recorded the complete Rameau Pièces de clavecin, and Danny Driver compellingly performs the Schumann Novelletten & Nachtstücke (the former being the composer's longest, but least known, piano cycle and regarded by Schumann as one of his finest works).
Re-issued this month are the perennially popular European Light Music Classics from Ronald Corp and the New London Orchestra, and the opulent Palestrina Missa Hodie Christus natus est, recorded in 2003 by Westminster Cathedral Choir.
From Linn Records a wide array of treats this month. Ingrid Fliter magnificently performs the Chopin Préludes, a complement to her much-feted recording earlier this year of the concertos. From the captivating Phantasm we have a new album of Fantasias & Anthems by John Ward—something of a revelation, and welcoming Magdalen College Choir Oxford to the label to join them in the anthems. Formerly on the Avie label, two earlier Phantasm recordings—of Gibbons Consorts for viols and exploring the Renaissance Four Temperaments—are now newly available. Elena Riu performs the piano solo title work on Ypakoë & other works by John Tavener which also includes a stunning performance of … depart in peace … from Patricia Rozario and the Scottish Ensemble.
For LSO Live the London Symphony Orchestra has recorded Mendelssohn Symphony No 3 and the Schumann Piano Concerto (Sir John Eliot Gardiner conducting, Maria João Pires the soloist). The LSO String Ensemble and Roman Simović give luxurious performances of the Tchaikovsky Serenade & Bartók Divertimento. Newly released on Signum Classics are an intriguing album of geographical guitar reminiscences from Christoph Denoth entitled Homages—A musical dedication, and from Classical Opera and Ian Page a complete recording of Mitridate, re di Ponto by Mozart, the composer's first operatic triumph (he was not yet 15).