The wind quintet made up of the principal players of the Danish National Symphony are fairly well-known from their earlier recordings. And Ralf Gothóni, who joins them for Poulenc's Sextet for Piano and Winds, is a strikingly sensitive pianist, particularly in chamber settings. The program itself is very strong; it comprises basically the core of 20th-century French wind quintet literature: the Poulenc Sextet, Ibert's 'Trois Pièces brèves,' Françaix's First Wind Quintet, and Milhaud's 'Le Cheminée du roi René.'
This spectacular set features a quintessential selection of western sacred music that that will please one and all, from an inquisitive novice to a discerning connoisseur. It features a vast array of critically acclaimed recordings of more than seventy cornerstone works, ranging from the earliest Christian chants to gospel songs and Gershwin's blues. The performers include some of today's finest artists, including René Jacobs, Philippe Herreweghe, Paul Hillier and William Christie. Offered at a special low price, this limited edition set is packaged in a luxury clamshell style box containing 29 discs of music and one PDF disc with sung texts.
The box set comprised 100 volumes featuring 72 pianists of the 20th century, each volume with two CDs and a booklet about the life and work of the featured pianist. The set contains a variety of composers from different eras, from Baroque to Contemporary classical.
Though the sudden embrace of the trappings of goth culture via Anne Rice was a bit odd, given Napolitano's long-standing fascination with both Catholic and Mexican imagery (and the elements of sex and death prevalent in both) it wasn't too strange. Her songwriting and singing focus remains much more roots-oriented, as the opening strut/stroll of "Bloodletting (The Vampire Song)" makes clear. Not that she and the band can't kick out the jams as well – immediately following that is "The Sky Is a Poisonous Garden," a punk-speed thrash with deliciously decadent imagery to boot. The most well known song was "Joey," which actually got some top 40 airplay; while it has a certain catchiness to it, ultimately it comes off as a less successful Heart song from the same era, which is saying something.