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DEBUSSY/MATTHEWS Préludes (1910-1912, arrs, 2001-06)
HALLE CD HLL 7527 [42.45][54.10]
(Previously CDHLL7513 and 7518) Now £8.70


Colin Matthews is a noted radical composer and active administrator, executive director of NMC Recordings. These recreations for orchestra of the Debussy Preludes, which have crept into orchestral concert programmes, have been reissued as a twofer.

This by-way in Matthews' extensive output is mostly very imaginative and skilful, never less than fascinating.

They have been reviewed in detail by Music Web 1 & 2, with appreciation and some reservations, and I would refer you to those links for detailed individual appraisals of the items on the discs as first released. See also Matthews' own thinking about the project, suggested by Sir Mark Elder.

I have found it enjoyable to follow them a few at a time with the piano scores and thereby get inside Colin Matthews' mind in a way rarely possible (critics nowadays have to mostly review without scores; too expensive to buy c.p. CDs - and following scores is disapproved of in some concert halls, likewise photography).

The ordering on the CDs is by Matthews' choice, so to hear them as in Debussy's published arrangement, you'd have to programme the tracks on your CD player.

Warmly recomended.

Peter Grahame Woolf