Yo-Yo Ma Plays Cello Masterworks is an eight-CD box set of previously released material recorded in the 1980s and 1990s, and presumably so familiar to his fans that the package doesn't even come with a booklet. It really is a no-frills affair, right down to the thin cardboard sleeves that repeat the same photograph on the box, instead of offering original cover art. But the greatest disappointment is that only three of J.S. Bach's Six Cello Suites were included, so listeners seeking them should forego this budget package and find the complete suites, which Ma recorded twice.
Though generally performed on the organ, the music of the great Dutch keyboard master Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck deserved to find another, no less intense means of expression on the harpsichord. These songs, dances and polyphonic pieces, played by Sébastien Wonner on a copy of a Ruckers, a Flemish instrument of 1612, allow us a glimpse into domestic life, as in a painting by Vermeer. This disc, Mr. Wonners first solo recital recording, was recorded in the auditorium of the convent of Saint-Ulrich, Sarrebourg, August 2013. A bilingual book French and English is included.
James Levine's viennese recording of Smetana's famed masterpiece is one of the best performances of the work around today. With clear, full-bodied digital recording and ripe, rich and opulent playing from the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, it presents a performance that is as comporable to Kubelik as any other. Despite Levine's roots in the theatre (Metropolitan Opera), he manages to grasp a clear sense of drama in the work, and while some might argue that he is mainly concerned with orchestral effect for its own sake, he certainly does not do this but presents every minute detail in this musical kaliedascopic picture.
Java 5 introduced generics capabilities to the language, and for most developers, simply knowing that collections were typed was enough to get them through the day. However, one look at the standard library in Java 8 tells you those days are over. To be an effective Java developer now, you must understand the details of generics and how they are used in Java 8. Designed for the intermediate level Java user, this video explores how generic classes and methods are defined, how they enforce bounded types through wildcards, and how you can use them in your own code.
Hearing or performing music comes closest in the range of human activity to a visceral connection to the past. As long as we have notation and knowledge of how to interpret it, we can effectively experience something like our ancestors did when they sang the same music. Of course, our 20th-century sensibilities and knowledge–or lack thereof–prevent us from sharing identical responses, but as with the music on this disc, when we hear it we are in some way transported to another place. We know a completely different sound world from our own; we know that the accepted order of certain things was different. And we also know that in many ways people haven't changed. Machaut's music conveys a spirituality–both joyful and contemplative–that's as true in its impact as it must have been 600 years ago, a point made ever so clearly by these especially vibrant and vital performances.