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CD & DVD review: Highlights from the European Brass Band Championships 2019

Featuring: Various bands and artists
CD: DOY CD394
DVD: WOB 203 DVD

European
stars
The opportune return of the European Championships to Montreux for the first time since 2011 made for a memorable festival event.

EBBA will be grateful to the outstanding Swiss Brass Band Association who provided the organisational foundation on which the representative bands were able to perform fine set-work and own-choice selections to an enthusiastic audience who headed in number into the superb Auditorium Stravinski on the picturesque banks of Lake Geneva.

Brilliance

Enticing memories will therefore be rekindled by these complimentary releases; for those lucky enough to have been present as well as viewers who enjoyed the live-stream broadcast from World of Brass - especially in recalling the brilliance of Eikanger’s rendition of Ludovic Neurohr’s questioning, esoteric Championship set-work, ‘...Dear Cassandra’ and Cory’s remarkable filmatic blockbuster response on ‘Explorers on the Moon’, which led to a title denouement that took the breath away in more ways than one.

The double CD provides a distilled version of the competitive events; the ‘winning’ performances from the Norwegian and Welsh heavyweights boosted by Luzern’s feverishly dazzling ‘King Kong on Rue Igor Stravinsky’ and the sumptuous textures of ‘Music of the Spheres’ by Paris Brass Band.  

Concert items from Valaisia Brass Band and the European Youth Band and the winning test-piece renditions from Challenge Section winners Brass Band Regensburg, Wardle Academy Youth and Catch Basin Brass infuse the flavour and make for engaging high quality listening.

It’s the twin DVD that puts an essential tingle on the tongue of post-contest opinion – although it’s a pity that Eikanger’s flawed, but diamond-cut ‘Concerto Grosso’ own-choice couldn’t be squeezed in

Tingle

It’s the twin DVD that puts an essential tingle on the tongue of post-contest opinion – although it’s a pity that Eikanger’s flawed, but diamond-cut ‘Concerto Grosso’ own-choice couldn’t be squeezed in (it is available as a separate download from https://www.worldofbrass.com as are all contest performances though). 

How that tickled the taste buds of so many in the hall, but not in the box...

Still, plenty to savour with the other highlights, which are mixed in with interviews and performances (as well excellent sleeve notes on both releases) from winners of what was a thrilling Challenge contest, thoroughly entertaining Youth Championships and stimulating Gala concert. 

The Swiss did EBBA proud, as did all the performers.

Iwan Fox


To purchase: 
CD: https://www.worldofbrass.com/100535-group.html
DVD: https://www.worldofbrass.com/100534.html

CD 1:
1. Euroflash (Damien Lagger
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
2. Dear Cassandra (Ludovic Neurohr)
Eikanger-Bjørsvik Musikklag conducted by Ingar Bergby
3. Virtuose Kumpane (Adam Hudec arr. Bertrand Moren)
European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
4. Terezín (Mario Bürki)
Brass Band Regensburg conducted by Dave Lea
5. It don't mean a thing (Ellington arr. Jack Cortner)
Patrick Ottiger with European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
6. The Firebird (excerpts) (Stravinsky arr. Ray Farr)
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
7. King Kong on Rue Igor-Stravinsky (Paul McGhee)
Brass Band Bürgermusik Luzern conducted by Michael Bach

CD 2:
1. Explorers on the Moon (Paul Raphael)
Cory Band conducted by Philip Harper
2. Valaisia Variants (Tom Davoren)
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
3. Argos (Stephan Hodel)
Wardle Academy Youth Band conducted by Lee Rigg
4. Music of the Spheres (Philip Sparke)
Paris Brass Band conducted by Florent Didier
5. Thoughts of Love (Arthur Pryor)
Manuel Zemp with BML Talents conducted by Patrick Ottiger
6. Relaxation from Salute to Youth (Gilbert Vinter)
European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
7. Sanctuary (Daniel Hall)
Catch Basin Brass Band conducted by Andreas Lackner
8. Finale from William Tell Overture (Rossini arr. Gregor J. Grant)
Valaisia Brass Band and European Youth Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc


DVD 1:
1. Introduction to the Championships
2. Conversation with Ludovic Neurohr
3. Dear Cassandra (Ludovic Neurohr)
Eikanger-Bjørsvik Musikklag conducted by Ingar H. Bergby
4. Conversation with Magnus Brandseth & Gyda Matland
5. Explorers on the Moon (Paul Raphael)
Cory Band conducted by Philip Harper
6. Conversation with Philip Harper & Glyn Williams
7. King Kong on Rue Igor-Stravinsky (Paul McGhee)
Brass Band Bürgermusik Luzern conducted by Michael Bach
8. Conversation with Michael Bach & Tobias Lang
9. Music of the Spheres (Philip Sparke)
Paris Brass Band conducted by Florent Didier
10. Conversation with Florent Didier
11. A Brussels Requiem (Bert Appermont)
Brighouse & Rastrick Band conducted by Professor David King
12. Conversation with Professor David King
13. Glass (Simon Dobson)
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
14. Conversation with Arsène Duc & Vincent Bearpark
15. Cory celebrations

DVD 2:
1. Spectrum (Gilbert Vinter)
Brass Band Regensburg conducted by Dave Lea
2. Conversation with Dave Lea & Florent Nicklas
3. Intrada Festiva (Alan Fernie)
Wardle Academy Youth Band conducted by Lee Rigg
4. Allegro from Trombone Concerto (Rimsky-Korsakov arr. Gordon Langford)
Adam Warburton with Wardle Academy Youth Band conducted by Lee Rigg
5. Conversation with Lee Rigg & players
6. Sanctuary (Daniel Hall) 
Catch Basin Brass Band conducted by Andreas Lackner
7. Conversation with Andreas Lackner & players
8. Thoughts of Love (Arthur Pryor)
Manuel Zemp with BML Talents conducted by Patrick Ottiger
9. Conversation with Patrick Ottiger & players
10. Blue Starter (Oliver Waespi)
European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
11. It don’t mean a thing (Ellington arr. Jack Cortner)
Patrick Ottiger with European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
12. Ende Mai (Markus Flückiger arr. Corsin Tuor)
European Youth Brass Band conducted by Bertrand Moren
13. Euroflash (Damien Lagger)
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
14. Concertino in Blue (Bertrand Moren)
Lionel Fumeaux with Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
15. Valaisia Variants (Tom Davoren)
Valaisia Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc
16. Finale from William Tell Overture (Rossini arr. Gregor J. Grant)
Valaisia Brass Band and European Youth Brass Band conducted by Arsène Duc

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