Caprices and Laments: Clarinet Concertos by Nielsen, Copland & MacMillan

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

The Scotsman, Ken Walton

The chemistry between Maximiliano Martin and the Tenerife Symphony Orchestra is as natural as it gets … Martin finds endless colour, rhythmic bite and charmed lyricism in these self-defining performances, sensitively matched by fine orchestral playing under conductor Lucas Macías Navarro”

★ ★ ★ ★ 

The Critic

“What I like most about this release is the playing of the Spanish soloist Maximiliano Martin, principal clarinet of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, an artist of great experience who has so much more to say in these pieces than the general run of record fodder”  

VoxCarnyx, The voice of classical music in Scotland

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

“[The Orquesta Sinfonica de Tenerife] is very good indeed. An internationally-recruited outfit, there is a crisp freshness to their string sound … The featured soloist is local lad Maximiliano Martin, long-standing principal clarinet of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra … For all that this is Martin’s disc, his countrymen are by no means a mere backing track, given the robust repertoire he has chosen to showcase his own virtuosity”

Pablo Alvarez Fernandez

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

“Martín elevates this exquisite score [Nielsen] to the culmination with a wise combination of great technique and musicality. The singing clarinet explores the extreme registers of the instrument, the impossible dynamics capable of cutting off our breath and the flying passages like “capricious laments”.

The Classical Explorer

★ ★ ★ ★ ★

“With Martín one feels a sense of Copland’s mastery; and the Tenerife Orchestra is clearly a top-shelf ensemble … Martín’s sound is simply beautiful: liquid, burnished and warm with little to no harshness in the upper reaches … A great combination of pieces, brilliantly performed with great understanding”

Release date January 2021

The benevolent shadow of Mozart meets a strain of emotional turbulence in Carl Nielsen’s unforgettable, at times inscrutable Clarinet Concerto – his last major orchestral work, completed three years before his death in 1931. Dating from two decades later, Aaron Copland’s concerto for the same instrument similarly bridges stylistic and expressive contrasts: composed with the genre-crossing expertise of Benny Goodman in mind, it brings a vein of lyrical sadness together with the verve of mid-century popular idioms from both the USA and Brazil.

James MacMillan’s Tuireadh, meanwhile, is a single-minded outpouring of grief, raising instruments to an almost vocal quality of expression in a lament for the victims of the Piper Alpha oil-rig fire. Clarinettist Maximiliano Martín – an internationally active soloist as well as principal clarinet of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra – is joined here by the symphony orchestra of his native Tenerife in three works which truly cover the gamut of human emotion.

Caprices and Laments: Clarinet Concertos by Nielsen, Copland & MacMillan

Gounod Petite Symphonie

Release date: May 2020

Francois Leleux, SCO Wind Soloists

Leleux is particularly suited to performing Gounod’s Petite Symphonie, which was written for nine of the finest wind players in Paris. Directing from the oboe, Leleux joins the SCO section principals as they demonstrate the strength of their chamber music instincts in a performance which sparkles with personality and individuality.

BBC Music Magazine 5 *

“It bubbles along with infectious delight in the SCO’s hands “

Gramophone 5*

“ ..there’s a real sense of give and take among the instrumentalists here, in a performance of fastidious elegance and, once again, great refinement…”

Hi Fi 

“The gem here is the little symphony composer by Charles Gounod. Leleux leads the renowned winds of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra.“


Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website

Gounod Petite Symphonie

Richard Strauss Duett-Concertino

Release date: August 2019

SCO, Robin Ticciati, Peter Whelan bassoon, Alec Frank- Gemmill horn, Maximiliano Martin clarinet, SCO Wind Soloists LINN RECORDS 

Robin Ticciati conducts the all-Strauss programme showcasing Frank-Gemmill’s extraordinary horn playing, as well as the skills of SCO section principals Maximiliano Martín (clarinet) and Peter Whelan (bassoon) in the Duett-Concertino. 

BBC Music Magazine 5*

This is a perfect Strauss sequence, highlighting soloists in that true army of generals, the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. Can we get the elephant in the room out first, though? It’s one concerto short. I’d be equally happy with Strauss’s second one for horn, or the best oboe concerto in the repertoire. And what’s for certain is that Alec Frank-Gemmill would do the former supreme justice. It’s hard to praise too highly his partnership with colleagues in the much more straightforward early work, where the opening flourish finds tone and engineering in vivid harmony. Normally in the young Strauss’s rather simple orchestration, you don’t notice the discreet woodwind frills, but they all register here, especially the most delicate ones from the two flutes in the finale. Ticciati’s elegant touch stops the ensembles from ever sounding too square. Subtle beauties abound in the Duett-Concertino — once a hearthside Cinderella, now admitted to the ball in an abundance of fine recordings. None is better than this one; clarinettist Maximiliano Martin plays the fairy-tale princess with due limpidity and spirit, but it’s Peter Whelan’s bassoon beast/bear who steals the show in his charismatic cantilenas without unbalancing the ethereal whole, reminding us that so many of Strauss’s non-vocal works are operas for orchestra. The rest of the wind get their characterful chance, too, in the sweet and simple Serenade. Only quibble would be over the portrait of Strauss, not at the age that could be applied to any of these works at either end of a distinguished lifetime.

BBC Record Review

Music by Richard Strauss, from my Record of the Week. It’s from the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, conducted by Robin Ticciati. Playing three pieces of early Strauss. A deliciously playful account of the Duett Concertino in which clarinettist Maximiliano Martín is the beauty to bassoonist Peter Whelan’s beast. One of the finest accounts I’ve heard.

The Scotsman 4*

The SCO often throws its own constituent talent into the limelight; in this case a threesome plucked from its wind principals – clarinettist Maximiliano Martin, bassoonist Peter Whelan and chief horn Alec Frank-Gemmill – who took solo roles in a programme engineered to capitalise on their strengths.

Martin and Whelan were first up in Richard Strauss’ Duet Concertino, giving a performance, under Robin Ticciati, that oozed wit, charisma and a fair bit of play-acting. The twin protagonists engaged in a narrative expressed in instrumental rather than human terms, which our duo conveyed as much through suggestive bodily movement and expression as through their effortless unravelling of Strauss’ beguiling and affectionate music.


Richard Strauss Duett-Concertino

Born in Dirt an’ Din

Release date: 30th August

Mr McFalls Chamber Delphian Records

For over a decade, Mr McFall’s Chamber has supplemented its core string line-up with a jazz trio of piano, bass and drums, often with an additional wind player as soloist – a role fulfilled here by Maximiliano Martín’s virtuosic clarinet. This typically powerful, typically eclectic programme showcases some of the results of these collaborations. Newly commissioned works from Tim Garland, Paul Harrison, Martin Kershaw and Mike Kearney sit alongside Robert McFall’s own arrangements of playful, cartoon-like short numbers by the renowned American composer, bandleader and inventor Raymond Scott.

The Arts Desk ****

“ This disc’s superb sleeve art is deceptive, and those hoping for an entire album of craggy industrial music will be disappointed. Paul Harrison’s music blends electronics and percussion to pleasing effect, an engaging depiction of busy, dirty industry. Mr McFall’s Chamber is at heart a string quartet, and this anthology adds a jazz trio, horn and clarinet in performances of pieces commissioned by the group. Clarinettist Maximiliano Martín is superb in several numbers, whooping and shrieking with incredible control, and there’s a melancholy solo from hornist Alec Frank-Gemmill in Martin Kershaw’s Far Vistas. I also enjoyed Tim Garland’s four movement ExtraPollination, its sections evoking Spain, Scottish lighthouse and a North London tube journey “. 


Purchase or download this recording from the Delphian Records website

Born in Dirt an’ Din

Sensations of Travel, Nigel Osborne Chamber Music

Release date: 22nd February

Hebrides Ensemble, Delphian Records

Gramophone Magazine ****

...But Osborne’s travels have become a kind of pilgrimage in search of relevance and responsibility that deserves serious attention, and these well-crafted recordings offer many different facets of an arrestingly contemporary musical voice.”

Herald Scotland ****

At once homogeneous and remarkably eclectic, the chief thing to say about the third album that cellist Will Conway’s Hebrides Ensemble has recorded for Delphian is that it is a beguilingly lovely listen. The full sextet (completed by pianist Philip Moore, violinist Zoe Byers, Catherine Marwood on viola and Rachael Clegg and Maximiliano Martin on oboe and clarinet) is assembled on none of the 20 tracks, although all bar Clegg play on the most recent music, written especially for the group. Preludio y cancion is derived from an opera-in-progress Osborne is writing with Ariel Dorfman and if all the music is as beautiful as this we are in for a treat.”

Purchase or download this recording from the Delphian Records website

Sensations of Travel, Nigel Osborne Chamber Music

Stephen Dodgson Chamber Music Karolos Ensemble

Release Date: July 2018

David Denton, David’s Review Corner
September 2018

Certainly in his lifetime the record industry did little to disseminate his music around the world, and that situation has changed little in the present century. So this excellent disc of his chamber music will go a little way to redressing the situation, its generic title of ‘Chamber Music with Harp and Guitar’ a ready guide to its contents. Though he wrote much on a large musical canvas, he was a superb miniaturist, his magical Septet for flute, clarinet, harp and string quartet, containing ten Variations each lasting little more than a minute. He was a tonalist, though he used that description while manipulating it to create his individual style and harmonic language. He could also be a composer of outgoing pleasure as we hear in the Carnival finale of the Pastoral Sonata; the effervescent scherzo of the Solway Suite, and the infused happiness of second part of Capriccio and Finale. These performances come from Karolos, a group containing eminent UK chamber musicians, and are highly persuasive. The sound engineering is superb, and I fervently commend the release to those who are looking for friendly modernity”.

Bringing together internationally acclaimed performers, Karolos is committed to seeking out new repertoire, as well as performing works from the canon. The group has embarked upon a series of performances and recordings  of the superb chamber music of Stephen  Dodgson.

Karolos is keen to promote these works alongside gems of the standard repertoire, and has received highly enthusiastic responses to date for the performances of both, as well as concert invitations for the coming months and years. 

Although he was particularly renowned for his music for harpsichord and for guitar, British composer Stephen Dodgson was a versatile craftsman of chamber music. The examples here reveal his intricate but surprising turns of phrase, from the subtle exploration of sonorities in the Septet Variations to the sunlit beauty of the Pastoral Sonata. Dodgson’s mastery of colour and texture is evident in his Solway Suite, while the early Capriccio and Finale treats the listener to a kaleidoscope of whimsical and witty interludes. From Naxos website.

Purchase or download this recording from the Naxos Records website

Stephen Dodgson Chamber Music Karolos Ensemble

Beethoven Chamber Music for Winds

Release Date: February 2018 LINN Records 

Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists

Beethoven Chamber Music for Winds

Financial Times, Richard Fairman 4*

It must have been a joy to attend an aristocratic dinner party in the late 18th century, when guests would have been entertained by bubblingly effervescent music from the host’s resident wind band. We may not associate Beethoven with this kind of background music, but he left a few delightful works from his early years. The Sextet and Octet are both congenial and highly skilled (Haydn sent the latter as one of a group of pieces to a patron noting that they showed “Beethoven will in time become one of the greatest musical artists in Europe”). The wind soloists of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra make a lovely job of them and throw in a handful of pleasing miniatures to fill the disc.

The Scotsman, Ken Walton 5*

There is something unquestionably operatic about Beethoven’s Sextet in E flat major for wind instruments. The themes sigh, dance, laugh and bicker like colourful characters on the stage. Some performances miss the point, others simply take it for granted, but this one by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra Wind Soloists is a showstopper, where the very stuff of theatre – its tensions and releases, its compelling narrative vitality and emotional nuances – is played out in scintillating musical terms. Take the wit and bounce of the bassoons, the languid teasing of the clarinets, or the poignant knowingness of the horns. All have biting relevance in this delightful opener to a treasure trove of Music for Winds by Beethoven. The ensemble playing throughout is a magical mix of homogeneity and individuality. When the oboes enter for the Octet in E flat, the sound world both brightens and thickens: another delicious and virtuosic musical adventure.

BBC Radio 3, Andrew McGregor

[Here’s] a recording of Beethoven from the wind soloists from the SCO. It’s tempting to head straight to the famous Beethoven octet but that would mean skipping over the E flat sextet and you really mustn’t. Just listen to the character they bring to the middle movements, starting with Peter Whelan on bassoon.

All the wit and character of all the individual players coming through but yet still at the service of the whole ensemble. Something close to a perfect balance of individuality and team spirit. It works just as well in Beethoven’s more celebrated octet. Between them you have clarinettist Maximiliano Martín joining Peter Whelan for the clarinet and bassoon duo making it a considerably entertaining intermezzo than I ever suspected it was before. Recorded in a church acoustic and attractively resonant, you’ll find Beethoven’s Music for Winds on Linn Records, new this week.

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website.


Beethoven Chamber Music for Winds

From Vienna: London Conchord Ensemble

Release Date: June 2017

Music by Mozart, Beethoven, Zemlinsky, Berg, Schoenberg and J. Strauss 

“The real gem is the Zemlinsky, a lovely showcase for the plangent cello tone of Thomas Carroll and Maximiliano Martin’s deep, chocolatey clarinet sound…”

“…generously filled set…( of the second disc) thoughtfully devised programme, performed with considerable conviction and style…”

Gramophone Magazine, Richard Bratby

“Of the two lovely CDs on this double Viennese disc, the second stands out as something special. The playing by various combinations of the London Conchord Ensemble is at its most inspired”

“There is radiance and lustre in Schoenberg’s Chamber Symphony No 1, hotly passionate with a momentum that overrides the encroaching dissonant style; true Brahmsian warmth in Zemlinsky’s D minor Trio for clarinet, (the SCO’s Maximiliano Martin), cello and piano and glowing mystique in the Adagio from Berg’s Chamber Concerto”.

The Scotsman, Ken Walton ****

“…All the performances are good, with some among the best available. Like this account of Mozart’s Quintet for Piano and Winds, the four wind soloists beautifully supported by pianist Julian Milford.

“…clarinettist Maximiliano Martin’s honeyed tones mingling with Rachel Roberts on viola…”

“...Richly recorded and abundantly annotated, this is a superb collection“.

The Arts Desk, Graham Rickson

Purchase or download this recording from the Champs Hill Records website

From Vienna: London Conchord Ensemble

Mozart: Divertimenti SCO Wind Soloists


26 January 2015
Gramophone Choice
Richard Wigmore

These performances wonderfully capture the charm of these Mozart chamber works, each instrument oozing a delightfully unforced sense of personality.

Like all the best ensembles in this music, they strike a nice balance between chamber-musical refinement and rustic earthiness. Natural horns lend a welcome abrasiveness to the tuttis; and the instrument’s variegated colours give an added piquancy to the horn tune that sails in out of the blue near the end of the first movement. Clarinets can be dulcet, as in the tenderly phrased Adagio, yet are not afraid to rasp and bite, to specially vivid effect in the sprightly second Minuet… the players balance polish, poetry and sheer bucolic enjoyment. The rare example of a Mozartian polonaise in K252 goes with a jaunty swagger (other performances I’ve heard are rather more decorous), while the lusty contredanse finales exude an impish glee. I fancy Mozart would have smiled in approval.”

‘The SCO Wind Soloists play the rare original scoring for six players – darker in timbre and sparer in texture – with brio.’ The Sunday Times

‘It is playing and music that exudes elegance, sparkles with joy and chuckles with good humour in a well balanced recording.’ BBC Radio 3 CD Review

‘Buy the disc and, and prepare to be charmed, amazed and delighted.’ M&M Music Shop

You’d be hard-put finding better wind ensemble playing.’ The Guardian

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website

Mozart: Divertimenti SCO Wind Soloists

Brahms and Mozart Clarinet Quintets

Together with the Badke String Quartet, Maximiliano Martin plays two of the most beloved works of the clarinet repertoire. The award label Champs Hill Records takes on this beautiful account of the Brahms and Mozart Clarinet Quintets.

“..with a bright tone and sensitive phasing, this is a most enjoyable performance”

Gramophone Magazine

“So what makes this new recording stand out from the crowd ? First of all, it is another virtuoso clarinettist who makes an unforgettable impression, dispatching the two composers demanding quintets with an easy smoothness, agile articulation and astonishing  attention to detail”

Amati Magazine, David Kettle

  ” Martin is a master stylist “

The Kangnam Hakbo, Charles Ian Chun

  “…ravishing and profound “

The Scotsman, Ken Walton

” And, hand on heart, among all the recorded versions I have known in the past 50 years, none has approached the supreme, wonderfully subtle and heart-stoppingly expressive performances on this outstanding new recording by Martin and the Badke Quartet. It is hypnotically concentrated: it is essential listening. ”

Sunday Herald, Michael Tumelty

Purchase or download this recording from the Champs Hill Records website

Brahms and Mozart Clarinet Quintets

Brahms Clarinet Sonatas/ Gade Fantasy Pieces

Martin makes his solo debut on the Champs Hill label playing late iconic works by Brahms together with the Fantasy Pieces by Gade. Julian Milford at the piano and produced by Chris Craker. 

” there is enormous depth in Martin’s interpretation….there is a strong sense on this disc that Martin is working with care and precision to live within the means and intentions of the music”

Gramophone Magazine, March 2014

” I have to say that what Martin wonders about Mühlfeld is exactly the same as many of us wonder about him, how does he produce that liquid, endlessly mellifluous tone? …”

The Herald on Sunday, Michael Tumelty

Martin and Milford made a strong case of them [Gade Fantasy Pieces]”

Fanfare Magazine

” Martin and Milford are a great team, playing with superb balance, solid technique and  heartfelt sincerity…”

American Record Review

” The F minor sonata is ripe with liquid, effortless phasing, Martin digging deep into its inner warmth…”

The Scotsman, Ken Walton

Martin elegantly conveys the soul and introspection of Brahms…”

The Kangnam Hakbo, South Korea, Charles Ian Chun

Purchase or download this recording from the Champs Hill Records website


Brahms Clarinet Sonatas/ Gade Fantasy Pieces

Weber Wind Concertos

The multi-award-winning Scottish Chamber Orchestra returns with Weber Wind Concertos, the sixteenth album in its celebrated series with Linn. This recording gives the internationally-acclaimed principal musicians a chance to dazzle in Weber’s virtuosic and thrilling concertos. Includes the Clarinet Concerto number 1 and the Concertino.

Alexander Janiczek leads the SCO’s section principals – Maximilano Martín (clarinet), Peter Whelan (bassoon) and Alec Frank-Gemmill (horn)

Named one of the Top Classical CDs of 2012

Manchester Evening News

“…dispatched with wit and fire by Martin.”

The Ark Desk

“..pristine and stylish.”

Herald Scotland

“These performances are absolute winners.”

The Observer

“..the Scottish Chamber Orchestra excellent soloists..”

The Times

“A wonderful disc…”
John Broggio
5 Stars

“It’s a lively listen, guaranteed to brighten up any afternoon and put a smile on your face.”


Purchase or download your copy from the Linn Records website

Weber Wind Concertos

Poulenc complete chamber works

London Conchord Ensemble, includes the Sonata for two clarinets and the Sonata for clarinet and bassoon.

Champs Hill Records: CHRCD028

“The ensemble clicks perfectly, the playing seemingly effortless and a regard for precision never stifling the musicians’ natural feeling for life and breath.”

BBC Music Magazine

” The London Conchord Ensemble manifestly relish what Poulenc has to offer, playing with panache, wit and discreet sensitivity in performances that are a constant joy.”


Purchase or download this recording from the Champs Hill website

Poulenc complete chamber works

St Petersburg

London Conchord Ensemble

Orchid Classics: ORC 100009

CD of the Week” in The Daily Telegraph

“.. The excellent London Conchord Ensemble puts us all in its debt in offering this repertoire. .. They all play with great intelligence and musicianship and are blessed with a natural recorded balance and vivid sound recording. .. Recommended with enthusiasm.”

International Record Review, June 2010

Purchase or download this recording from the Orchids Classics website

St Petersburg

Vibraciones del Alma

‘Vibraciones del Alma’, the second solo recital album from Spanish clarinettist Maximiliano Martin, is a captivating selection exploring the diversity of European clarinet repertoire. Scott Mitchell piano. Produced by Philip Hoobs.

Linn Records: CKD331

‘Spanish clarinettist Maximiliano Martín demonstrates what “virtuoso” means in this exciting album of works by a variety of composers’

Scotland on Sunday

‘hay que saludar al joven Maximiliano como otro “grande de España” del clarinete’

Opus Musica

‘all delivered with solid technique and silken tone’ 

Classical Music Magazine

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website


Vibraciones del Alma

Messiaen Quatour pour la fin du Temps

To celebrate the centenary of the innovative composer including his masterpiece,  the Quartet for the End of Times and plus some interesting works. Produced by Philip Hoobs. Hebrides Ensemble.

Linn Records: CKD314

‘…these are superb performances…placing this firmly among the best accounts on disc.

BBC Music Magazine

‘…vivid, beautifully judged performances from the Hebrides Ensemble…’ 

The Guardian

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records webiste

Messiaen Quatour pour la fin du Temps

Mozart Clarinet Concerto

To celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Linn Records: CKD273

‘Martin’s playing has the easy virtuosity that only top class musicians can achieve’

Hi-Fi Choice

‘Maximiliano Martin’s performance of the Clarinet Concerto is characterized by a very secure tone, unwavering in even the most difficult passages’ 

Atlanta Audio Society

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website

Mozart Clarinet Concerto


Brilliant debut album, includes repertoire by Lutoslawksi, Nielsen, Debussy and Poulenc – produced by Andrew Keener.

Linn Records: CKD 280

‘Luminously languorous, soaringly sensuous.’


‘Martin’s masterful combination of liquid tone and dazzlingly articulate virtuosity are compelling in Debussy’s eloquent Premiere Rapsodie.’

 The Scotman

Purchase or download this recording from the Linn Records website





A list of recordings with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra is available on their website.