Archive for January, 2015

No 10/10 here

Last August in the post entitled “May I Present……….”   I promised to report every review “good or bad”.   Well, here’s one that is quite different from the others in several respects.

The American Record Guide has reviewed recordings since 1935.   It is published bimonthly and claims to offer “500 reviews every issue written by a freelance staff of over 80 writers”.   In presenting itself it strikes a bold, jaunty, in-your-face posture…..   “no stuffy British sentences (what, I wonder, is a British sentence?) or academic circumlocutions.   If you resent hype and jargon you will like our writing”.   For what kind of readership is this magazine targeted?

One of the writers is George Adams.   I cannot find too much information about him other than he is working on a music PhD (no specifics), that he is a composer (no further detail) and “plays most string instruments (even guitar) sic and keyboards”.  (An impressive range of skills).

After quoting from the cover of the CD – not the sleeve notes – he delivers his opinion.   For those of a weak disposition, stop reading now………   “I don’t find the music particularly compelling, partly because it doesn’t sound “non-prescriptive” at all.   The novelty of indeterminacy doesn’t save the more straight forward sections from their rather unexceptional material and substance”.

That’s it really.   Ammunition exhausted.   Unlike the other reviewers  Mr. Adams does not review the three sonatas individually.   He refers only to the opening of the seventh so one is left wondering whether his comments apply to all three sonatas or to this one section.   Personally I find this incompleteness to be ambiguous, unsatisfactory and confusing.

For the complete review please enter Reviews of Metier MSV 28544 Eric Craven Piano Sonatas.

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Blog Stats

Yesterday I received the 2014 Annual Report from WordPress detailing the blog’s activity over the year.   The following is a selection from the stats provided:

During 2014 the blog was viewed about 1900 times.

There were 4 views on Christmas day!

Curiously there were 111 views on the 4th November.   Why there should be this spike completely eludes me.   This day precedes the (rather splendid) review from ClassicsToday by 2 days and my reporting of the Sheffield University concert was posted on the 22nd October.   Very odd.

Visitors to the site came from 48 different countries.

Most were from the UK and the USA.

Some other countries identified by the stats include: the Netherlands, Brazil, New Zealand, Norway, the Russian Federation, Croatia, Kyrgyzstan, Puerto Rico and the Republic of Korea.

This has prompted me to consider if the geographical distribution of the sales of the CDs has any correlation to the above.   I doubt if Divine Art generates such data but I will enquire and I will keep you …… posted.

As 2015 beckons with all its unknowns and challenges may I wish you all good health, good fortune, success and contentment.

Myself?   I hope that my underlying chronic dissatisfaction with what I am will continue to motivate me to write more, learn more and understand more.

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