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Well performed

The Sunday Times, Paul Driver


THIS DISC from an enterprising new label surveys Birtwistle’s wind and solo piano music, from Refrains and Choruses for flute, oboe, clarinet, horn and bassoon (1957) – his opus one – to Five Distances (1992) for the same combination, and reveals how great and how little is the distance he has come. Refrains, with its savoured dissonances, north-country assertiveness, and chunky ritual structure, is already pure Birtwistle though a tyro piece. Five Distances calls on a far more cosmopolitan technique, but makes clear that this is not a composer given to stylistic revolutions. The attractive (flute) Duets for Storab, suave Verses for clarinet and piano, and ingenious An Interrupted Endless Melody for oboe and piano are among the 12 mostly rare items, all of them well performed.


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Excellent playing, well-balanced and full of character

Gramophone, Geoffrey Norris

The glittering talent that is the Galliard Ensemble

What’s on in London, Duncan Hadfield

Performed with assurance and flair

BBC Music Magazine, Anthony Burton

These will become reference performances

O Publico, Teresa Cascudo

Excellent performances, highly characterful, firmly shaped and dramatic

New York Times, Paul Griffiths

They have technique, style and high spirits in spades

Time Out, Martin Hoyle

Immaculate performances … a pure delight … unreservedly recommended

MusicWeb International, Hubert Culot

Demands that were easily met

The Times

A young ensemble of considerable merit

Gramophone, Arnold Whittall

Superb sound

Richard Whitehouse

Excellently played

BBC Music Magazine, Nicholas Williams

One of the highlights

Paul Conway, The Independent

Stunning music and extraordinary playing


The Observer, Edward Bhesania

The performances are simply breath-taking

Gramophone, Andrew Achenbach

Endlessly fascinating

The Guardian, Andrew Clements

Incisive, confident and well-tuned

BBC Music Magazine, Anthony Burton

Excellent ensemble playing and vivid recording.

Classical Music on the Web UK, Peter Grahame Woolf

Galliard Ensemble
Like angels sent from heaven

Paul Patterson

Beautiful, delicate and fluent playing

Aberdeen Press and Journal, Alan Cooper

A highly talented wind quintet

West Somerset Free Press, Trevor L Sharpe

Galliard Ensemble
Immaculately prepared

Seen & Heard, Peter Graham Woolf

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