Notes and Editorial Reviews
This is a hybrid Super Audio CD playable on both regular and Super Audio CD players.
There aren't many decent concertos for oboe, let alone similar works for English horn or bassoon, but these three certainly qualify. They are aggressively neo-classical: charming, tuneful, light, and gentle. Thankfully Wolf-Ferrari has no axes to grind and doesn't need to impress us with his "depth". In fact, these aren't traditional concertos at all, but are closer to baroque suites (think of Bach's B minor Suite for flute and strings). Each has four movements of unchallenging length, highlights the solo instrument effectively, and offers plenty of contrasting tunes and textures.
The performances are uniformly fine.
Oboe/English horn soloist Piet van Bockstal has a pleasing tone that's never fatiguing or whiny. Bassoonist Luc Loubry manages to sound lyrical without turning unintentionally comic, and both players are very well balanced against an orchestra that has no trouble with the composer's modest demands. The engineering is equally warm and satisfying in both regular and SACD stereo. This isn't the kind of disc that will blow you away, but it's very nice music for quiet evenings at home, or for a relaxing break from your otherwise busy day, and heaven knows there's nothing wrong with that.
--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com
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