BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No. 5 in E flat, Op. 73 "Emperor." Sonata No. 18 in E flat, Op. 31 No. 3
Artur Rubinstein, piano. London Philharmonic Orchestra / Daniel Barenboim, cond.
EPOCH SACD CDLW 7364 TT: 67:16

VAUGHAN WILLIAMS: Incidental musi to Richard III. Fantasia on Susses Folk Tunes. Suite de Ballet. Songs of Travel. Roderick Williams, baritone. Royal Scottish National Orchestra / Martin Yates, cond.
EPOCH SACD CDLX 7359 TT: 72:49

ELGAR: Civic Fanfarwe (3 versions). The Spanish Lady, Op. 89 (Symphonic suite). Organ Sonata in G, Op. 28. Severn Suite, Op. 87.
Royal Scottish National Orchestra / Martin Yates, cond.
EPOCH SACD CDLX 7363 TT: 77:49

Artur Rubinstein's final recordings of the Beethoven piano concertos were made for RCA in April 1975 in London's Kingsway Hall, with Daniel Barenboim leading the London Philharmonic. Epoch already has issued the first four (REVIEW). Nw we have Concerto No. 5, and again we find the famed pianist in top form when well into his 80's. To fill out the disk we have another lat4eRubinstein reording made in London's Abbey Road Studio in April 1976, Beethoven's Snata no. 18 in E flat, Op. Op. 31 No. 3. This is not a quad reording. Collectors should also investigate another Rubinstein reordings made the previous year, available on DVD. Heplays Beethoven's Concerto No 3 and Concerto No. 1 of Brahms, with Bernard Haitink and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw (REVIEW). It is a pleasure to watch him work his keyboard magic.

Dutton Epoch has two superb issues of music by English composers in sterling performances by the Royal Scottish National orchestra conducted by Martin Yates. All were recorded in sessions September 2018 in in Dundee's Caird Hall produced by Michael Ponder with Dexter Newman in charge of engineering. They did their tasks to perfection: this is a rich, well-balanced audio picture that displays he performance effecively in mui-channel sound.

The Vaughan Willaisiams disk opens with Incidental Music for Richard III written in 1944; the 14 brief sections are individually tracked. Then from 1929 we have a rariety, the 12-minute Fanasia on Sussex Folk Tunes with Nadège Rochat as cello soloist. The earliest music (1929) is the brief four-movement Suite de Ballet adapted for flute and string orchestra by Rogr Steptoe featuring as soloist Anna Noakes. The disk ends with the composers settings of texts by Robert Louis Stevenson, Songs of Travel,. These have been arranged by the composer and Roy Douglas.

Lighter Elgar is featured on the second disk. It begins with the brief but grandiose 1927 versopn of Civic March, which is heard twice more: an undated version featuring organist Christopher Nickol, and a 1933 version that also featured the organ. The delightful suite from The Spanish Lady, restored from Elgar's sketches by Mrtin Yates, begins with a rousing Comedy Overture. The major work is Gordon Jacob's orchestration of the Organ Sonata, and the disk ends with the 1931 five-movement Severn Suite. All of this music is of interest, and the performances could not be bettered. Don't miss either of these major recordings.

R.E.B. (August 2019)