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CD Cover Szymanowski and Berg Violin Concertos Classification: CD of the Month Label: Pavlik CD Number:PA 0143-2-131 Price:£12.54

Comment:Two great contemporary violin concertos. Szymanowski's lush and deeply romantic 2nd Concerto, paired with Berg's concerto dedicated "To the Memory of an Angel" the 18 year old Manon Gropius. Superb recording. The Szymanowski is also on a 12inch 45LP.

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CD Cover Reflections - Britten, Vaughan Williams, Stravinsky Classification: SACD New Label: 2L CD Number:2L-125-SABD Price:£25.00

Comment:Here are three much loved 20th century pieces of music for string orchestra, played by a much smaller group than usual. They are recorded in the round making you part of the music in Surround Sound. 2L present this in 6 audio formats on 2 discs!

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CD Cover Shostakovich Symphony No.13 in B-flat Minor, Op. 113 "Babi Yar" Classification: New Label: Gega New CD Number:GD 384 Price:£12.54

Comment:Shostakovich's most angry and bitter symphony is based on the poems of Yevgeny Yevtushenko. Babi Yar is the site where the Germans killed over 50.000 Jews who are commemorated in the poems.

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CD Cover Tyberg Masses Classification: SACD New Label: PentaTone Classics CD Number:PTC 5186 584 Price:£13.93

Comment:The biography of Marcel Tyberg (1893-1944) runs like a film. He never courted fame, but his Austrian-Jewish background make him another composer lost during the Holocaust. With echoes of Mahler and Bruckner these Masses, make quite an impact.

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CD Cover Viva Italia Sacred Music in 17th Century Rome Classification: New Label: MSR Classics CD Number:MS 1580 Price:£12.54

Comment:All the represented composers worked at the Collegio Germanico, the Vatican's school for training German-speaking Catholic priests. A wide variety of styles can be heard in the acoustic of Duke Chapel, North Carolina. Period instruments underscore.

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CD Cover Mascagni - Guglielmo Ratcliff Classification: New Label: RTE Lyric FM CD Number:CD152 Price:£16.99

Comment:Premiered at La Scala in 1895, Mascagni's opera, set in a Macbeth-like Scotland, presents the tragic figure of Ratcliff as he seeks redemption. Taken from a live performance, this is a dramatic experience, with an impact that will amaze!

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CD Cover Evgeny Irshai Slovak Notebook Classification: New Label: Pavlik CD Number:PA 0144-2-131 Price:£12.54

Comment:Ten songs reflecting on life, matters eternal and relationships based on poems by Ivan Krasko (1876-1958), who is considered a master of Slovak lyric poetry. Evgeny Irshai's music is equally lyrical, interspersed with four piano interludes.

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CD Cover Contemporary Czech Guitar 2 Classification: New Label: Vixen CD Number:V2-3902 Price:£12.54

Comment:Hearing this selection by Josef Mazan it becomes obvious that guitar music is very much alive in the Czech lands. Familiar rhythms are mixed with local Folk themes and more, to which Josef Mazan brings an orchestral feel to his brilliant playing.

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CD Cover Jihye Lee - Diamond Sutra Reader Classification: New Label: Hevhetia CD Number:HV 0129-2-331 Price:£10.54

Comment:With Jihye Lee are the unusual line-up of Stefaan Debevere, soprano and alto saxophone, Sabin Todorov, piano and Bo-Sung Kim, janggu, kwenggwari and jing (percussion). Originals and standards given a Korean twist by Jihye's vocals.

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CD Cover The Son Classification: New Label: Hevhetia CD Number:HV 0072-2-331 Price:£10.54

Comment:The Son is a deeply autobiographical album created by David Kollar in the wake of his son undergoing major surgery. His guitar makes most of the sounds, but mixed in you will hear a mandolin and gamelan. There's an unlisted very short bonus track!

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