Review By Juan Berberana,Ritmo,October 2011
Ya publicado por Naxos el grueso del catálogo sinfónico de Arnold Bax (destacando sus excelentes sinfonías, en manos de Lloyd-Jones), así como el grueso de su obra para piano y cámara, el sello blanco parece adentrarse en lo más intricado, pero valioso, de su legado. A ello responde la grabación de estas tres piezas para piano y orquesta (dedicadas a la pianista Harriet Cohen, amante y musa del compositor). Sin duda la más interesante (y larga), de las tres, es Winter Legends (1930), donde Bax se deja llevar por su habilidad en la descripción de la naturaleza y sus paisajes, que en este caso contiene elementos de cierta violencia e incluso oscuridad, ya que su composición surge de sus estancias en el norte de
Review By Ronald E. Grames ,Fanfare,September 2011
Ashley Wass, Naxos’s brilliant house pianist for British repertoire, has produced an outstanding series of the Bax piano works and chamber music, and he joined James Judd two years ago for their first Bax collaboration for that label, a recording of the Symphonic Variations. It was greeted with enthusiasm by Paul Ingram in Fanfare 33:1. Expectations, therefore, are high for this new release.
Review By Roger Hecht,American Record Guide,September 2011
…Naxos’s sound is closer to the listener, more solid, articulated, and powerful, and more detailed than the distant and blended Chandos acoustic.
Andrew Burns’s notes are up to Naxos’s best standard and are especially good on Winter Legends.
To read the complete review, please visit American Record Guide online.
Review By Claire Vaquero Williams,Scherzo,September 2011
Review By Victor Carr Jr,ClassicsToday.com,August 2011
Ashley Wass and James Judd turn in a finely wrought and atmospheric performance of Bax’s Winter Legends—a piano concerto in all but name. A Bax specialist, Wass highlights the alternating delicacy and bravura of the composer’s piano writing (especially in the alluring solo that opens the Molto moderato third movement), while Judd is equally adept at the orchestral accompaniment, drawing rich, colorful playing from the Bournemouth Symphony. This recording supplants the previous version by Margaret Fingerhut and Bryden Thompson, as Thompson is not as free with the music as Judd, and Chandos’ over-reverberant recording makes Bax’s already swimmingly chromatic music sound even more so.
Review By John France ,MusicWeb International,June 2011
In the early seventies I remember looking at the list of Arnold Bax’s compositions in Grove in the Mitchell Library in Glasgow: there seemed so many of them. I guess that I had heard a couple of pieces that had been released on the old Revolution label—I think they were The Tale the Pine-Trees Knew and the Viola Sonata. There were others available, but in those days I could not afford to buy everything I wanted. Besides, there were also albums of music by Led Zeppelin and Yes to buy! Yet, I had been hooked on Bax’s music: the sound-world had captured my imagination. Being a Scot, with Irish and English blood in my veins the music was designed to appeal to all those facets of my inherited character.
Review By Andrew Achenbach ,Gramophone,June 2011
Another sparkling gem of a release in Ashley Wass’s Bax series for Naxos
Review By Jean-Charles Hoffelé,Diapason,June 2011
Review By Brian Wilson Download Roundup,MusicWeb International,April 2011
I’ve had time only to dip into this new recording, but first impressions suggest that it presents a very strong challenge to Margaret Fingerhut and Bryden Thomson on Chandos: Winter Legends with the Symphonic Variations on CHAN10209(2)X, Saga Fragment, with the Russian Suite, etc., on CHAN10159X, Maytime in Sussex, with the Violin and Cello Concertos, on CHAN101054X, all at mid price. I plan to compare the Naxos and Chandos contenders more fully next month.