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Nicholas Kenyon - Guardian (July 1917)
Bach Violin Sonatas
For another exuberant, vital, red-blooded anti-period performance I also deeply enjoy the LP set by Menuhin and George Malcolm (harpsichord) with Ambrose Gauntlett (viola da gamba) from 1962 with Menuhin and Malcolm totally united in their phrasing. Oh, these should be out on CD! Violinist.com
Concerto for Keyboard in D major, H 18 no 11 by Franz Joseph Haydn
Performer: George Malcolm (Harpsichord)
Conductor: Sir Neville Marriner
Orchestra/Ensemble: Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
Written: by 1784; Eszterhazá, Hungary
This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
This time the Academy has plenty of punch. George Malcolm’s harpsichord has a bright ring that enables it to sound over aggressive playing of the Academy. The combination of harpsichord and modern strings seems odd today but was more common in 1968, when this recording was made. I’m partial to Brautigam’s fortepiano, and to his lively, imaginative playing, but Malcolm impresses, not least with his fascinating cadenza.
In case you thought that the music of the most original, most misunderstood, and, above all, the greatest of Bach's sons need sound charmlessly emaciated and absurdly hard-driven, listen to this from 1967. Rarely has Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's sounded with greater enlightenment - and Enlightenment. The concerto emerges as both good fun and a substantial work to be reckoned with: just the right balance for the forces, here deployed to excellent effect. Raymond Leppard conducts the English Chamber Orchestra. The four harpsichordists are the sorely underrated - at least today - George Malcolm, Simon Preston, Geoffrey Parsons, and Valda Aveling. Boulezian Blog (2014)
I have Jean Pierre Rampal and Robert Veyron Lacroix performing the Bach Flute Sonatas on cassette, and wanted a CD recording of these lovely pieces. William Bennett and George Malcolm fit the bill. Theirs is a fine CD on several counts: expert, highly musical playing; all 6 Bach flute sonatas on one CD; clear sound; and budget price. William Bennett has a beautiful, liquid tone, and George Malcolm is a superb harpsichordist. Both musicians are balanced well, in a clear, up front acoustic, with Bennett seeming to be slightly forward, and Malcolm in a supportive role. William Bennett plays a modern flute. The give and take between Bennett and Malcolm is superb. A most enjoyable disc, highly recommended. (Amazon)
...Let us not forget Shaffer was William Kincaid's prize pupil and beneficiary of his platinum and golden Powell flutes (now in the Smithsonian). The quality of sound in this recording is excellent. Malcolm absolutely shines as a harpsichordist and makes the recording a good listen. (Amazon)
I know I have perhaps been spoiled, but the definitive collection of these sonatas (in my opinion) is the Elaine Shaffer/George Malcolm Angel recordings of the 60's. Malcolm is at his perky and jaunty best here. The flute playing is also good, in tune, and light on the vibrato which is a miracle considering Bennett studied with Rampal. But there is something missing....Shaffer's playing of the B minor was haunting and ethereal and there were lots of musical nuances which are also missing in this "straight forward," and may I add "fast" performances... (Amazon)
Brian Radford - Bradford Delius Festival (1985)