On sale now: Gameshow – the stunning new album from Rob Buckland featuring saxophone concertos by contemporary composers Michael Ball, Graham Fitkin, Jacob ter Veldhuis and Andy Scott.
“A stunning recording that has clarity, depth, emotion and impact. Effortless virtuosity from Rob & John, and quite brilliant playing from the Royal Northern College of Music Wind Orchestra.” Andy Scott
“From the first note, Rob takes the listener by the hand on a fascinating journey. During the Slow Movement, you here the beautiful spacious acoustics of the hall – the sound engineer did a perfect job. The many colours in this fine orchestra prove how well Mark Rogers arranged the concerto. So far I’ve only heard it performed by American bands (like a stunning one by the United States Navy Band featuring Branford Marsalis), and admittedly, the Americans know how to swing. But here, there is this indescribable British approach, in tone, sound, and mood, which I love very much. Rob Buckland is an amazing soloist, he knows how to lead, has many registers on his instrument and uses them all.” Jacob ter Veldhuis
5.0 out of 5 stars Saxophone virtuosity 9 Nov 2012
By Dr. Peter G. Upton
The long-awaited album of saxophone concertos commissioned by and for Royal Northern College Professor and founder member of the Apollo Quartet Rob Buckland is a labour of love, and includes pieces that he has played over the past few years with the College's Wind Orchestra. The young musicians clearly idolise their teacher and have pulled out all the stops with some technically difficult pieces to produce a very listenable CD. Buckland's mastery of the instrument and use of modern techniques push the sax into areas unimaginable twenty years ago. I particularly enjoyed the first piece by Michael Ball and Dark Rain by Andy Scott which features John Harle, the other towering figure on the UK Saxophone scene. Scott has a lyrical touch which I felt gives an optimistic end to a piece inspired by a visit to Hiroshima. Gameshow by Graham Fitkin and Tallahatchie Concerto by popular Dutch composer Jacob ter Veldhuis maintain the high standard of composition and playing.
Well written sleeve notes add to the package, and production values are high. The Royal Northern's Wind Orchestra is reconstituted every year with successive crops of students; this year's harvest is a good one...