Cover image for The Penguin guide to compact discs
The Penguin guide to compact discs
March, Ivan.
Personal Author:
Completely revised and updated.
Publication Information:
London : Penguin, 1999.
Physical Description:
xxiii, 1639 pages ; 24 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
ML156.9 .G76 1999 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks-Non circulating

On Order



Widely regarded as the standard guide to classical music on CD, The Penguin Guide to Compact Discs has been updated to take into account the many hundreds of new and reissued CDs that have appeared in the last three years while also including all the highlights from the back catalog. Arranged by composer, the guide lists the major recordings of each work--from remastered vintage recordings to the latest releases, from the highest-quality offerings to budget releases--with evaluations of interpretation and performance by the authors, as well as assessments of recording accuracy and advice on the best buys for cost and quality. This edition includes coverage of new recording enterprises, such as Philip's "100 Great Pianists" series, CDs issued to tie in with particular musical anniversaries, entries for several significant but previously little-known composers, and detailed coverage of period-instrument performances. With the best of the previous guide now reevaluated in the light of newer releases, this essential reference work is designed to help you select the very best of recorded classical music available today.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

The revised edition of The Penguin Guide is an impressive achievement. The editors have taken considerable care to provide accurate information, and both British and US catalog numbers for recordings are indicated. A ratings system, one to three stars (adequate to superior) is employed, and reviews are both informative and succinct. The choices were, of necessity, selective; fortunately, many budget recordings omitted here are included in the companion Penguin Guide to Bargain Compact Discs (CH, Jun'99). A British bias is noticeable; unhappily, John Cage, Lou Harrison, and several other important Americans are excluded. Listings of individual works are inconsistent; it is disconcerting, for instance, to find Schubert's song cycle Die sch"one M"ullerin listed both before and after his choral compositions. More serious is the omission of collections of works by several composers; many vocal and instrumental recitals and anthologies of medieval and Renaissance music are missing. Perhaps future editions might be published in two volumes, the first for recordings by individual composers, the second recitals and anthologies. Nevertheless, the present edition is highly recommended for purchase by both academic and large public libraries. D. Ossenkop; SUNY College at Potsdam