Favorite recording of... Concerto Grosso


Active Member
Having recently recieved Kings of Europe I listened to the recording of Concerto Grosso and found myself comparing it to the one of Stavanger on the Norwegian Brass Band Championships CD which is fantastic and actually found myself prefering the Stavanger version, although the YBS version is technically slightly better the Stavanger version has more "atmosphere" (for want of a better word) this may be due to the slightly more relaxed rules regarding instrumentation at the Norwegians but its a wonderful performance. Anyway this wasn't meant as a critique of either recording However it did get me thinking about how many other recordings of this piece there are a quick search of World Of Brass revealed 10!

so which is your favorite?


the YBS recording at the 2002 European is simply stunning, one of those recordings when you can hear the concentration and the trombone playing was just scary (circular breathing?!?!?!) no wonder it got 99 points!


Staff member
Although both of the live YBS performances from 2002 & 2003 are very good, for me they are just topped by Eikanger-Bjorsvik under Howard Snell at the 2000 Europeans in Birmingham. I realise that this opinion may be influenced in part from having been there, and with it being the first time I'd heard it played live, but their reading seems to have a particular freshness, with each change of mood bringing more vitality and interest.


Active Member
1991 BBC Festival of Brass ( Doyen recording ) Grimethorpe - Frank Renton - brilliant playing just little details like balance , no overblowing , style and real flair come through . I think the Eikanger performance at the 2000 European is brilliant , it has something which some studio recordings lack ( which just sound a bit flat and disjointed )


Active Member
Like others here, I think all the performance have something special about them.

Eikangers was the first performance I heard and thought it was fantastic. I do think that YBS' performance is the definitive brass band performance of the work though. 2002 was immense but I do enjoy watching the 2003 one on DVD as well. It absolutely cooks tempo wise so is constantly close to the 'edge'. Fantastic in the closing moments when DK just seems to shout the last 6 notes at the band then the Eb tuba goes mental and cheers...superb :D

Would love to hear the original with the Phillip Jones Brass Ensemble (Hint: if anyone has a copy :wink: ), that would be quite a task for 10-15 players.


Eikanger's performance in 2000 Euro's was awesome and that just takes it from YBS in 2002 and 2003.

Phil Green

Supporting Member
I'm with Nick on this, the Grimey recording is my favourite. Not only is the balance perfect but the EEb bass player, Paul Davis, has a fantastic day, in my opinion the best of the bunch - with all due respect to Magnus(?), Pete and Gav.


The Eikanger 2000 version does it for me.

Perhaps YBS' versions are technically better, listening to them I feel that players were being very careful and both performances were very controlled the piece just unfolded like it should.

However I just love the energy and flow of the Eikanger performance where the players are just putting so much and taking so much risks in the performance.


Mark Bousie

Eikanger's performance at the 2000 European was incredibly exciting and real edge of the seat stuff! Difficult to judge with the 2002 YBS european show, which probably just edges it technically,as I wasn't there to hear it live. I'd have them both!

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