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John Prine

CD Cover John Prine is reissuing his 1999 album of duets, In Spite of Ourselves (Oh Boy Records, $8.98), at a special price for independent stores. Prine chose some of country music’s best duet songs, and teamed up with with great partners: Iris DeMent (who sings on four tunes), Lucinda Williams, Emmylou Harris, Trisha Yearwood, Connie Smith, Fiona Prine, Melba Montgomery, Delores Keane, and Patty Loveless. “(We’re Not) The Jet Set,” “We Must Have Been Out of Our Minds,” and “Milwaukee, Here I Come” are among the classic songs.

On September 30, Mr. Prine will release For Better, or Worse, a follow-up to In Spite of Ourselves, with duet partners Iris DeMent, Alison Krauss, Miranda Lambert, Kathy Mattea, Kacey Musgraves, Fiona Prine, Amanda Shires, Morgane Stapleton, Susan Tedeschi, Holly Williams, and Lee Ann Womack.


New Classical

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Steve Reich: Double Sextet & Radio Rewrite (Harmonia Mundi, $18.98) – Steve Reich will be 80 years old this October, and the celebratory concerts and recordings have started. Ensemble Signal (conducted by Brad Lubman) follow up their recording of Reich’s Music for 18 Musicians last year with two more Reich works. Double Sextet (2007) is scored for two groups of flute, clarinet, violin, cello, vibes and piano, won the Pulitzer Prize for Music.  Radio Rewrite (2012) reworks material from two Radiohead songs: “Jigsaw Falling into Place” and “Everything in Its Right Place.” Ensemble Signal just performed Double Sextet at the Lincoln Center Festival, and their Reich was cited as “defined by a vitality of attack and an attention to color.”

Machaut: A Burning Heart (Hyperion, $18.98) – The a capella quartet, Orlando Consort, with their third volume of songs by Guillaume de Machaut, the 14th-century master.

Beethoven: Missa Solemnis (Sony Classical, $12.98) – Conductor Nikolaus Harnoncourt died this March 5. In his final series of concerts last summer, he conducted the Concentus Musicus Wien (a period instrument ensemble he founded in 1953) and the Arnold Schoenberg Choir, plus soloists Laura Aikin, Bernarda Fink, Johannes Chum, and Ruben Drole.


Gramophone Magazine’s Recording of the Month: July

CD Cover Nicholas Angelich, Dedication: Liszt Schumann Chopin (Erato, $17.98) – Pianist Nicholas Angelich brings an interesting concept to his album by the “three pillars of Romantic pianism.” He links Schumann’s work dedicated to Chopin, Chopin’s to Liszt and Liszt’s to Schumann.” Inluded are two Chopin Etudes, Liszt’s Piano Sonata and Schumann’s Kreisleriana. Gramophone say Angelich’s “magisterial virtuosity is uniquely contemporary, even as his imaginative grasp easily encompasses a persuasive vision of the 19-century ethos.”