VOCALISE A. Mayer 4796843

The music is well-chosen to show off Mayer's artistry in a variety of instrumental and vocal settings . . . one of the highlights on this disc is Mayer's own arrangement of Mozart's concert aria "Ma che vi fece", K. 368. At his most virtuosic here, Mayer is given a stylish and precise accompaniment by Abbado and the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. Another winner is "Pavane pour une infant défunte", in an exquisite arrangement . . . [the "Children's Prayer"] is heartbreakingly beautiful . . . Mayer plays seamlessly, and with a freedom of expression that seems to me just about ideal . . . a well-chosen selection of compositions just about flawlessly executed by one of the foremost oboists of our time.

. . . Mayer possesses a seamless cantabile and sonic glow that constantly beguile the senses in this wide-ranging programme.

This disc is a showcase of his art . . . If I would allow myself to use the word "magical" without restrictions, I would probably use it about every track: such is the creamy silkiness of the sound, so heartfelt the intonation, so smooth the blending with the orchestra or piano . . . [Schumann's "Romance"] is just pure, enchanting cantabile . . . the ensembles/orchestras shine as well . . . Fauré's Pavane is very beautiful. "Claire de lune" breathes the warm perfumes of the night. Handel's arias are plaintive yet springy, with warm sincerity and aristocratic poise . . . Vivaldi's "Winter" is very pastoral and so the transcription fits the oboe character perfectly . . . The song is suspended in the static golden mist . . . Hahn's "Ŕ Chloris", where Mayer takes the English horn, is magical . . . with a warm veil of serenity . . .The recording quality throughout is excellent; the rounded sound has a soft golden sheen . . . This album cast a spell on me . . . you should give this disc a try. You'll hear great oboe playing in a lot of beautiful music.