Rub your eyes, New Year, revellers, this is for real.
Yet another independent classical label has joined the Slipped Disc scheme offering free downloads through the holiday period. Several more labels have asked to be included and will be taken into consideration when we revive the scheme at the next set of holidays.
The last of the present batch is Avie, a co-op label founded by Simon Foster (ex-Virgin Classics) and Melanne Muller (ex-BMG, Universal). Their artists – who include such renowned performers as the San Francisco Symphony Orchestra with Michael Tilson Thomas, pianists Imogen Cooper and Luiza Borac and violinists Thomas Zehetmair and Augustin Hadelich – maintain full ownership and control of their recordings. What the label adds is production, marketing and promotional assistance. It’s an attractive home for many musicians who have tired of corporate label interference in their lives.
The first download is another world premiere – a work by Hans Gal, an Austrian composer, born 1890, who fled the Hitler annexation and settled in Edinburgh, where he was at the hub of musical life until his death in 1987. Never a modernist, Gal held Brahms as his role model and wrote in a tonal manner, with a contemporary, sometimes comedic twist. This is the last movement of the Triptych for Orchestra, played by the Northern Sinfonia,
Kenneth Woods (not as previously listed. To download, click here.