Music and Vision homepage

Record Box

Russian master

enjoying Shostakovich

BIS    CD-1256

Shostakovich: Suite on Finnish Themes etc. © 2001 BIS Records AB


To me, and doubtless many others, Shostakovich is a composer for weaving long and fascinating adagios, from which we may at first focus on the use of texture -- partly from the structure that keeps tightening and relaxing, and partly from harmonic colour, often in dark and restless array. But it would be nothing more than muzak if the brain behind it was not of a splendid architect deploying the ingredients linked to a preciseness of development and fulfilment.

This BIS collection gathers the Rudolf Barshai scorings of Quartets 8 and 10, and also places a world première alongside -- the Suite on Finnish Themes from 1939, which is mostly voice and instruments in a folksy jollification [listen -- track 2, 0:00-1:05]. But there remains a relentless vivacity that is the very essence of this Russian master. Some tracks display it more than others. These performances are true to the music and its ambience.


Copyright © 27 April 2002 Basil Ramsey, Eastwood, Essex, UK



Shostakovich: Suite on Finnish Themes etc

CD-1256 DDD Stereo NEW RELEASE 58'20" 2001 BIS Records AB

Anu Komsi, soprano; Tom Nyman, tenor; Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra conducted by Juha Kangas
Suite on Finnish Themes (1939) (world première recording); Symphony for Strings Op 118a (after String Quartet No 10, arranged by Rudolf Barshai); Chamber Symphony (String Quartet No 8 Op 110b, orchestrated by Rudolf Barshai) 'In memory of victims of fascism and war'




 << Music & Vision home      Recent reviews       Basil Harwood >>

Download a free realplayer 

For help listening to the sound extracts here,
please refer to our questions & answers page.

Record Box is Music & Vision's regular Saturday series of shorter CD reviews