An explosive collection of waltzes and polkas from the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, conducted by Franz Welser-Möst. Album of the Week, 7 January 2013.
The two Strauss brothers, Josef and Johann, certainly know how to write an elegant waltz, but this album's variety is pleasantly surprising. The Vienna Phil showcase the many elegant facets of Viennese dance music, kicking off with the up-tempo polka, Die Soubrette , and moving through more sedate numbers like Wo die Citronen blüh'n .
There's a nod to Verdi and Wagner in the year of their bicentenaries, and even an opportunity for those well-versed in the waltz to discover some lesser-known music in the form of Strauss' last waltz, Hesperus-bahnen , or the music of Josef Hellmesberger. And, for waltz-lovers expecting a few familiar favourites, the New Year performance of the Blue Danube and the Radetzky March is sure to entertain.
Soupy tunes, singing cello lines, and a few twinkling triangle 'tings' thrown in for good measure, this cheery album captures both the optimism of the new year and the elegance of the Viennese concert hall.