Penguin Guide To Compact Discs

Charles Avison’s set of Twelve Concertos, Op.9 was published in London in 1766. Written in four parts, the composer invites the use of keyboard (notably organ) as a replacement for the violin as the concertino soloist. The music is elegant and easy-going, which is reflected in the pleasingly polished and stylish performances by the Georgian Concert, who play the slightly melancholy slow movements with grace and charm. Their double-dotting, however, could ideally be a shade crisper, and allegros given more bite (although the finale of No. 8 dances agreeably). The recording is natural and the ambience just right and, with the reservations expressed above, this makes enjoyable relaxed listening.