For the casual listener, there are two impediments to enjoying this disc. First, the works are transcriptions of orchestral works for chamber ensembles, and second, both transcriptions are played on a light-toned fortepiano and cat-gutted stringed instruments. But for the dedicated listener who knows and loves Beethoven's Symphony No. 2 and Piano Concerto No. 4 and who accepts and enjoys period instruments, this disc will be pure enjoyment.
“Abbado’s approach to Brahms is generally direct, but his control of rhythm and phrase makes the performance instantly compelling” – The Penguin Guide to Compact Discs
Superbly crafted and convincingly modern, though imbued with an expressivity most modern composers would have abjured, the Fourth and Fifth symphonies of English composer Richard Arnell arguably deserve to be heard as often as the symphonies of his contemporaries Alwyn and Arnold. In this superlative coupling of his Fourth Symphony from 1948 and his Fifth Symphony from 1957, Arnell emerges as a cogent composer ……..James Leonard @ AllMusic
This is one of the mere handful of great recordings of the Sibelius violin concerto. Not that there aren't many contestants in the field; in fact, it seems that almost every modern violin virtuoso wants to record the Sibelius, and perhaps this isn't surprising, since it's one of the Big Five (along with the Beethoven, Brahms, Mendelssohn, and Tchaikovsky) major violin concertos.