Just for the Record. Guitar Foundation of America. Winter 1997.
Recording: Excellent balance and bloom.
Comments – Ricardo Cobo plays these brilliant but grueling scores with the insouciant flair of a master, a title which he has clearly earned in just a few decades of life. These two stunning additions to the concerto repertoire were written for Bream and Williams respectively, and beautifully explore both the techniques and aesthetics of those well-known personalities. Cobo makes them his own, however, and even out-Breams Bream, whose premiere recording of the piece (RCA7718-RC1988) is woefully misbalanced, in spite of the composer’s superb conducting and valiant soloing on the part of the dedicatee. This ESSAY recording is the Toronto Concerto’s premiere recording, and will doubtless win many friends for the piece, whose gorgeous 13 -minute theme and variation middle movement shows Brouwer at his lyrical.