Globe classical music writers choose their favorite classical albums of 2022

Hans Eisler once wrote a work called 13 Ways to Explain Rain. In 2008, Danish composer Hans He Abrahamsen produced a similar series of portraits of snow, or “Schnee”. Despite being formally constructed as a sequence of strict canons, this is avant-garde music at its most beautiful, introspective and poetic. And this vividly atmospheric new recording underscores the musical and meteorological home of the Northern Finland-based Lapland Chamber Orchestra.

warner classics

“Lars Vogt: In Memoriam” (Warner Classics)

With the passing of pianist Lars Voigt from esophageal cancer at the age of 51 this year, the classical world has lost a deeply humane and profound musician. The album brings together 50 of his songs from various recordings he made for EMI over the years, including Voigt’s solo repertoire (Mozart, Brahms, Schumann, Berg), chamber music (Frank, Haydn, Stravinsky), Concerto (Beethoven with Simon Rattle and City) is introduced. of the Birmingham Symphony Orchestra). Mozart’s Piano The opening movement of his 10th Sonata may be the most sparkling, graceful and perfectly proportioned six minutes of his music I’ve heard this year.


Gidon Kremer “Mieczyslaw Weinberg: Unaccompanied Violin Sonata” (ECM)

Composer Mieczyslaw Weinberg died in relative obscurity in 1996, but his music over the past decade has steadily risen from the shadows, thanks in large part to dedicated champions such as violinist Gidon Kremer. I have surfaced. Kremer released a charming new album this year dedicated to Weinberg’s three solos His Violins His Sonatas. The album is an intensely expressive work that captures Bartok’s knotted strength, Ysaye’s athleticism and Shostakovich’s tragic grandeur. At 75, Kremer has nothing left to prove, but he still plays with all the conviction this music deserves.

— Jeremy Eichler

Decca Classics

Carlos Simon “Slave Requiem” (Decca Classics)

In this evening-length piece, Carlos Simon honors 272 enslaved people In 1838 it was sold to pay the debts of Georgetown University, where the composer now teaches. Mournful brass refrains, Catholic melodies, spirituality and contemporary chamber music are woven into this poignant remembrance of lives stolen, featuring trumpeter MK Zulu, hip-hop artist Marco Pave and Boston’s Alongside hub new music comes a piano composer.

Muskmelon song

John Luther Adams “Scylla: Breath of the World” (melon music)

Want to feel smaller? Close your eyes and listen to “Cyra,” the latest in John Luther Adams’ atmospheric song to the natural world. included in the recording. The length of each musical expression in “Sila” is flexible, as is the size of the required five (!) ensembles, so no two performances will be exactly the same. quartet, and various musicians from the University of Michigan.

at circle records

Various artists, ‘The US and the Holocaust (Soundtrack)’ (In a Circle Records)

Violinist Jonny Gandelsmann was the driving force behind the soundtrack to Ken Burns’ recent documentary The US and the Holocaust with Lynn Novick and Sarah Botstein. He has assembled an enviable team of composers and performers, including clarinetist Kinan Azume, bassist Shanil Blumenkranz, guitarist Gan Reilly, and violinist Dana Lin to co-compose a number of musical pieces. created an hour-long album containing a mix of their work. “Cold Fall” is sublime, a new interpretation of existing music. Oboe player Katherine Needleman’s skeletal rendition of the slow movement of Bach’s Violin Concerto in E major is a gem, as is Gandelsmann’s and Asmeh’s interpretation of Ernest Bloch’s Prayer.

— A-Z Madonna

Decca Records

Klaus Makella “Sibelius” (Decca)

Don’t blame Klaus Makella for all the attention surrounding the 26-year-old Finnish conductor and the inevitable backlash his early success generated. Look ahead and you’ll find a conductor with tremendous talent and room for maturity. Both are included in this set of Sibelius Symphonies.

sony classical

Igor Levit “Tristan” (Sony)

The latest adventure of one of the world’s most imaginative pianists, Igor Levitt, focuses on the long shadow the Tristan myth has cast over the history of music. Its centerpiece is not Wagner, but Hans Werner Henze’s Tristan, a fascinating concerto-like work for piano, orchestra and tape. Like the works of Wagner, Liszt and Mahler that surround it, it is mesmerizing.

at circle records

Johnny Gandelsman, “This Is America: An Anthology 2020-2021” (In a Circle Records)

In the first year of the pandemic, frustrated by the enveloping sense of isolation and hopelessness, intrepid violinist Johnny Gandelsmann began commissioning a total of 22 solo violin works. The resulting collection is a remarkably diverse cross-section of American music, both a reflection of contemporary crises and a manifesto about the power of art to guide us.

— David Weininger

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