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American Icons Works for brass by Copland, Gershwin, Barber and Bernstein

Academy Symphonic Brass/James Watson

RAM 042

A very impressive and enjoyable CD to follow RAM Academy Symphonic Brass in Richard Strauss, 2008.

This one has a more interesting programme and its strength especially, from Tony Rickard's brilliant transcriptions which are some of them more alluring than I recall the originals.

Liu Ji is impresive in Rhapsody in Blue, but isn't it overlong at 17 mins and a bit thin compositionally? And is Kimon Parry a little reticent in the Bernstein ?

Best is the Porgy & Bess RR Bennett/Rickard, which holds the attention for its 17 mins in a way that the Rhapsody doesn't?

Well produced with good playing and demonstration quality in-house recording at the Duke's Hall; subtle treatment of the cover image with three degrees of colour saturation.

Peter Grahame Woolf