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For The Record

The Hornimint Audiophile Edition aims to briong back into circulation excellent but long deleted records in the slim hope of recouping ancient costs.

The re-release of the classic 1968 account of Professor Brian Thrupiece's Violin Concerto - timed to coincide [prematurely] with his 84th birthday on 1st April - has been welcomed by everyone in both the audiophile and classical-music loving communities. Indeed critics and aficionados alike have been united in their praise for the "timeless gem" that has almost never been in the catalogue since its initial release.

The Absolute Noise Magazine's vinyl expert Anna Logg has dubbed it "one of the recordings of the last century" suggesting that the combination of Rosin Bow [violin], Sir Handy Wither-Baton and The Thrupiece Philharmonic together with the sublime acoustic of the old Kingston Hall and the skills of sound engineer Mick Singh-Dex conspired to make the perfect recording and one of the very few to survive the test of time. "No remake has or ever will repolace it", she suggests, "not least because no second recording ever has been or is ever likely to be made" *

* Despite a strong critical reception, sales of the LP were disappointing and it was soon remaindered. It was never remastered for CD and no other company felt moved to try again. Secondhand copies occasionally make it onto thread-bay, but rarely go for significant sums. It is a recording "more praised than enjoyed" and "more acclaimed than auditioned".

It must have been part of the thinking of Hornimint executives that the release might cause something of a welcome stir, though they can hardly have inticipated that the intense interest generated by the LP would surround not its contents but it's cover. Clearly wahat was deemed innocent in 1968 is open to very different interpretation in 2024!

The fuss surrounds, says worldwide interweb influencer Em T Edd, "the optics of the body language. Is that a predatory hand from the conductor poised to pounce on the ample thighs of Ms Bow and is her leather-booted foot restraining him? Or is he the victim of a virtuouso dominatrix caught in the act of pinnioning his arm prior to stamping on his genitals?" "Perhaps", she admits, "we will never know".

Music fans will be equally divided in their assessment, with those believing the music-making is dominated by the soloist taking one view and those insisting that it was the conductor who framed the overall interpretation favouring another. Either way the image is an uncomfortable one in these days of gender-sensitive hyper-semiotic awareness.

"The fact is", says clasical music moderniser Lavelle Ing-Down, "that the classical music industry is still a fascist, mysogenist, transphobic and racist cesspit, where male conducting egos trample the sensitivities of the undervalued and downtrodden female, trans and gender-fluid orchestra members. You feel it in almost every recorded interpretation - take, for example, Berlioz's Harold in Italy or Richard Strauss's Ein Heldenleben - not a trans role model in sight. It's an absolute disgrace".

Readers interested in acquiring a copy of Brian Thrupiece's Violin Concerto [LP only £65 or more] are advised to make their purchase soon. The music of not only its intensely quiet slow movement [pppp-ppp-pppp] but also its bombasic finale [mf-fff-ffff] is already being drowned out by the sound of pulping machines, bandsaws and other bulk disposable mechanisms.

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