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Vol. IV.

APRIL, 1927

No. 11

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THE prospect of giving any kind of adequate survey of the records published during the last quarter is aJarming, for I don't believe that any three months since the beginning of THE GR.AMOPHONE have produced such a wealth of first-class orchestral and instrumental records. And this would be true cven if the celebration of the Beethoven centenary had not added to the critics' responsibility. Perhaps the wisest course will be to postpone the consideration of the Beethoven issues. Luckily the duplication is not excessive, but there is a certajn amount of i t , and I know th a.t rea.ders will expect me to stat e my own prefer ences whenever t here is a quest ion of choosing between two or more versions. I believe that in old days the Columbia version of The Unfinished Symphony was always the most popula,r, and my own vote would go for this new version under Sir Henry Wood over the new H.M.V., which was entrusted to Goossens ; though,

whether I would spend the extra six shillings on that preference I rather doubt . Admirers of Sir Thomas Beecham should not fail to notice that his Prince Igor dances have been re-recorded with splendid results. So too have Sir H enry Wood's successes-the Faust ballet music and Th e 2nd Hu.nga,ria,n Rhapsody. In the Columbia l ist I thought the Rienzi Overture with Bruno Walter conducting the l{,oyal Philharmonic Orchestra a fine piece of recording and playing and on the whole better than the new Polydor. I f people want something new, I strongly recommend the two records of With the Wild Geese, an early composition of Sir Hamilton Harty, conducted by himself with the Halle Orchest ra. He and they are responsible with Archie Camden as soloist for Mozart's Bassoon Concerto which becomes more and more delightful every t ime one hears i t . I feel justified in recommending to people who cannot afford the whole work the very lovely slow movement, which is