The Chronicle

This latest work from the husband and wife team of Anthony Goldstone and Caroline Clemmow lifts what could be pedestrian pieces of work to a higher level. We can imagine that the pieces on this CD — Scheherazade , Antar and Neapolitan Song — could be banged out by a hack player to make inoffensive background music, but Goldstone and Clemmow give it a zing and sparkle. It’s an enjoyable 77 minutes.

Scheherazade is Rimsky-Korsakov’s most famous work, and is the famous story of the sultana who saved her life by telling the homicidal sultan lots of interesting tales. The opening few moments, down at the bottom of the keyboard, reflect the threat of death hanging over the sultana but after that it’s a chipper set of pieces, starting with the tale of Sinbad. The Neapolitan Song , which is credited “after Denza” but which today would be a plagiarism court case, is a lively number you’ve probably all heard. It is possibly performed by the drunken guests in the Godfather wedding that features in the first film. A pleasing album for piano fans.

—Jeremy Condliffe