The Complete Organ Works of Basil Harwood Vol.2
Adrian Partington at the organ of Birmingham Oratory
PRIORY PRCD 684
In The Organ, No.320, I expressed reservations about Harwood as a composer, and although I would say that the quality of the music on Vol.2 is higher than on Vol.1 I still dislike the bitty stop-start nature of many of the pieces on this CD. However, there are some very strong musical ideas to be heard in the Sonata No.2 in F# minor, Op.26, and the Rhapsody, Op.38, and Christmastide, Op.34, are particularly impressive.
Again, Partington plays this music so well that I don't think his interpretations will ever be surpassed. I do hope we hear more CDs of the splendid 1909/1987 4-manual Nicholson organ of Birmingham Oratory; it's as British as roast beef and Yorkshire pudding and it fits this music like a glove! Priory's fine recording and Kenneth Shenton's excellent booklet perfectly complement Partington's expertise. CN
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