Spanish Favorites for Guitar
2002 Telarc International - 80576
Joaquín Malats (1872-1912)
1. Serenata española
Francisco Tárrega (1852-1909)
2. Capricho Árabe
3. Recuerdos de la Alambra
Enrique Granados (1867-1916)
4. Andaluza (Spanish Dance No. 5)*
5. Danza melancólica (Spanish Dance No. 10)*
6. La Maja de Goya*
7. Valses Poéticos*
Vivace, Melódico, Tempo de vals noble,
Tempo de vals lento, Allegro humorístico
Allegretto, Sentimental, Vivo, Presto.
Isaac Albéniz (1860-1909)
8. Sevilla (Op. 47)*
9. Mallorca (Op. 202)*
10. Asturias (from Suite española, Op. 47)*
Antonio Ruiz-Pipó (1934-1997)
11. Canción y Danza No. 1
*Arrangements by David Russell
On Reflections of Spain , Russell plays the music of his childhood home with all the joy you would expect from someone revisiting a beloved place. Russell's formidable technique is powered by a keen intelligence and tempered by an emotional delivery. He plays chestnuts like Tarrega's "Recuerdos de la Alhambra" and Albeinez's "Austurias" with a fond intimacy that rescues them from cliché. Perhaps the finest moments on the CD are Russell's guitar arrangements of four of Granados's compositions. Although Granados wrote pieces like "Danza Melancolia" and "Andaluza" for piano, Russell's thoughtful versions remind us that the folk dances that inspired them were originally accompanied by the guitar.
David Russell is one the finest classical guitarists to emerge in recent years, and his playing on Reflections of Spain is a near perfect wedding of technique and temperament.
Russell's superb performance and the incredible Dammann guitar bring out the very best in each, and that combination is breathtaking. Russell's two tracks composed by Tarrega are, in my opinion, the best recordings of those compositions, which shouldn't be a surprise as Russell won the Francisco Tarrega Competition in Spain. The beauty of the tremelo on track three is hard to describe except that I stop whatever I'm doing each time I hear it, and I've played this CD often. A lot.
The recording quality is impressive but drifts into subtle significance after listening to an hour plus of rich full-bodied Russell/Dammann genius. (How does Russell do so much without any string sqeeks?)
An incredible controlled performance. Russell's skill to get all range of sounds and colours is just amazing! His phrasing is exraordinary and his actual technique is just astonishing. One of the best recordings of these works. The music is just very enjoyable, and the performance, done in such a beautifull way, makes this recording one of the best versions of these beloved works. A complete world of emotions and artistry!
Amazon U.K. Customer Review
The recorded sound is also of the highest quality with an ambience that suits the music well. If you already have these pieces on CD, no matter, this recording is well worth having simply for David Russell’s playing.
Andy Daly, musicweb.uk.net
Release Date: 01/22/2002
Label: Telarc Catalog #: 80576
Date of Recording: 3/2001
Venue: Owings Mills, Maryland