Winner: The Music of Bliss & Howells (Brighouse & Rastrick)
2. The Music of Philip Wilby: The Pilgrim's Progress (Black Dyke)
3. Summon the Heroes (Cory)
Five of the long list nominations this year got at least one preferential winning vote from our panel, but in a close run battle between the top pair it was Brighouse & Rastrick's classy exploration of the music of Arthur Bliss and Herbert Howells under the baton of Dr David Thornton that won the day.
The performances of some of the pillars of brass band foundation repertoire such as 'Pageantry', 'Belmont Variations', 'Three Figures' and 'Kenilworth' are fresh yet ultimately respectful — and a timely reminder that they should never be left to gather musical dust.
It gained 5 votes to 4 over Black Dyke's intuitive pilgrimage of Philip Wilby's music with the sparkling virtuosity of Cory's 'Summon the Heroes' in third.
Lots to admire from all the nominees, with the releases from Rothwell Temperance and Black Dyke (Gold Vol VIII) both getting a first place vote.
The performances of some of the pillars of brass band foundation repertoire such as 'Pageantry', 'Belmont Variations', 'Three Figures' and 'Kenilworth' are fresh yet ultimately respectful4BR Editor Iwan Fox
2018: Metropolis — Black Dyke
2017: Dances & Arias — Black Dyke
2016: War Memorials — Cory Band & Tredegar Band
2015: Dark Arteries — Tredegar Band
2014: Gaia Symphony — Eikanger Bjorsvik
2013: When Worlds Collide (The Music of Nigel Clarke) — Brass Band Buizingen
2012: Masquerade — Foden's
2011: Only for You: The Music of Paul Lovatt-Cooper — Black Dyke
2010: Romeo & Juliet — Eikanger Bjorsvik
2009: Maestro — Foden's
2008: New Music for Brass Band — Foden's
2007: Vienna Nights — Black Dyke
2006: Heaton: Volume 4 — Black Dyke
2005: Tales and Stories — Eikanger Bjorsvik
2004: Music of the Spheres — Yorkshire Building Society
2003: Bourgeois in Brass — Yorkshire Building Society
2002: The Heaton Collection — Black Dyke and the ISB
2001: Butterworth — Black Dyke
The Awards Panel consisted of: Iwan Fox (Editor 4BR); Malcolm Wood (Chief Contributor); Andrew Wainwright (Writer/Composer/Arranger/Graphic Designer/Journalist); Gordon Simpson (statistician Brass Band World magazine); Chris Thomas (Chief Contributor Brass Band World magazine); Kenny Crookston (CEO, Brass Bands England); Frode Rydland (EBBA Music Commission/soprano cornet Bjorsvik Brass); David Hirst (Conductor/Association of Brass Band Adjudicators); Alexander Zwann (Chief contributor CU Brass); Tom Davoren (conductor/composer); Tim Mutum (writer/brass band recording and history specialist); Owen Melhuish (President: North Shore Brass New Zealand); David Gallaher (Director of Air Force Music — Royal New Zealand Air Force Band)