Reviews - CDs and DVDs

Fodens Band Patrons Choice VI

Patrons 6 Fodens  a

Paton's Choice Vl


Foden's Band 

MD: Michael Fowles

Recording Label: DOY309





This is the latest in the series of CDs dedicated to various personalities associated with the band. This particular one is dedicated to the memory of the late Peter Foden C.B.E.

Kenneth Hesketh’s  Masque gets the programme off to a flying start and immediately shows the quality of the band who are obviously enjoying their playing  under MD  Michael Fowles.

Live and Let Die from the James Bond film of the same name (1977) shows Soprano player Richard Poole in fine fettle. Paul and Linda McCartney’s score has been skilfully arranged by Ray Farr.

Victory for Me by Wilfred Heaton is Salvation Army Music at its best and this effective arrangement refers to the tune My Beautiful Home.

Bel Canto, a fine lyrical and peaceful composition from Kenneth Downie displays Tenor Horn player Leslie Howie’s effortless playing with a beautiful melodic line.

Electra by  Martin Ellerby was the 2012 British Open Championship test piece. Here is the recording by the BBC  of the winning  performance conducted by Allan Withington  in what could be described as a flawless performance of a stunning piece. It is in three movements.   The outer movements highly rhythmically charged and the inner lyrical core  where all the key solos occur.   All the ingredients of a challenging test successfully managed by a band which on the day could only be described as at their very best. Bravo!!

In complete contrast  Spain  a well known jazz standard by Pianist Chick Corea is  arranged for brass  by Peter Meechan and lends itself to some very fine improvisation from Trombonist John Barber.

A quick Zip through  The Wild  Bears from Elgar's Wand of Youth Suite No.2 gives the band a chance to show their ability to play at breakneck speed and under control.

Glyn Williams (Euphonium) gives a polished performance of the classic showpiece Pantomime in his own inimitable style and is closely followed by Xylophone protagonists  Mark Landon and Anthony Mann with a witty performance of Sandy Smith's  Liszteria

Howard Snell's arrangement of part of the 2nd suite of Ravel's Daphinis and Chloe is a masterpiece of arranging and this recording of the winning performance in the National Championships brings this CD to a wonderful close. I doubt if this will ever be bettered. Maestro Withington must surely have been blissfully satisfied with his completion of “The Double”.

1     Masque  - Fodens Band (Kenneth Hesketh)  [5.43]
2     Live and Let live  - Fodens Band - Soprano Cornet Soloist: Richard Poole (Paul and Linda McCartney / Farr)  [3.18]
3     Victory for Me  - Fodens Band (Wilfred Heaton)  [3.54]
4     Bel Canto  - Fodens Band - Tenor Horn Soloist: Lesley Howie (Kenneth Downie)  [5.25]
5     Electra  - Fodens Band (Martin Ellerby)  [12.43]
6     Spain  - Fodens Band (Chick Corea / Meechan)  [3.04]
7     Domen  - Fodens Band - Flugel Horn Soloist: Helen Williams (John Magne Forde)  [4.37]
8     The Wild Bears  - Fodens Band (Edward Elgar / Snell)  [2.11]
9     Hymn for Diana  - Fodens Band (Joseph Turrin)  [5.34]
10     Pantomime  - Fodens Band - Euphonium Soloist: Glyn Williams (Philip Sparke)  [4.52]
11     Liszteria  - Fodens Band - Percussion Duetists: Mark Landon and Anthony mann (Sandy Smith)  [4.01]
12     Daphnis and Chloe: The Second Suite  - Fodens Band (Maurice Ravel / Snell)  [15.44]


Des Graham