Johann Strauss I Edition, Vol. 18

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Time flies! Marco Polo is already on Volume 18 of this series, and the problem with publishing complete collections of this music (as with Johann Strauss II), is that there's just so much of it--and of course it all sounds, if not the same, then at least "of a piece". Still, it's important to take note of new releases such as this if only to remind everyone that the project is ongoing, and--more to the point--well worth collecting. Even if you don't want everything, you should dip in and try a volume or two.

This one contains six delicious waltzes, a couple of quadrilles (that on tunes from Balfe's The Four Aymon Sons is particularly fun), and one polka. They were composed in the mid-1840s, and the music is unaffectedly fresh and spirited. As the title "Viennese Fruits" suggests, the music is so much of its time and place, and it's impossible not to enjoy Strauss' limitless fund of tunes.

Ernst Märzendorfer is a pro in this music, and the orchestra plays with a pleasantly Slavic edge to its timbre that somehow seems extra authentic. Marco Polo's sonics are extremely clean and vivid. If you're looking for some agreeable music for casual listening, or even to accompany a quiet day at home, give this (or any of the other volumes in this series) a shot. Recommended.

--David Hurwitz,

Product Description:

  • Release Date: February 22, 2011

  • Catalog Number: 8225338

  • UPC: 636943533826

  • Label: Marco Polo

  • Number of Discs: 1

  • Composer: Johann Strauss Sr.

  • Conductor: Ernst Marzendorfer