Ernest Bloch’s music is unabashedly pictorial and emblematic of late Romantic-era expressionism, with an impressive catalogue of works, many of which draw deeply on his Jewish faith. Alto Records returns these benchmark recordings of three of Ernest Bloch’s greatest works, composed during the twentieth century’s second decade, to international availability, including the Vanguard recording of Schelomo with cellist Zara Nelsova and the Israel Symphony under the direction of one of Bloch’s greatest artistic champions, Maurice Abravanel.
“Bloch’s Israel Symphony is a large-scale work anticipating the Hollywood film composers’ styles for biblical epics… the vigour and spontaneity of Abravanel’s Utah performances… transferred to CD with great success.”-Penguin Guide
“Nelsova’s Schelomo, with Abravanel’s support, is a fitting setting for the cellist who was Bloch’s own choice for the work.”-Gramophone
“The Three Jewish Poems hints towards Respighi’s Roman triptych (then yet to be composed)… Bloch’s subtly coloured canvasses seem custom-built for an age increasingly attracted to late-romantic musical tone-painting. We are therefore greatly indebted to Sedares for these clear-headed, sensitively turned performances, extremely well engineered. Anyone with a taste for atmospheric evocations cannot fail to enjoy”-Gramophone