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<i>Night Air</i>

Music critic Tom Manoff takes issue with the recent trends in "classical collection CDs" -- recordings of classical music based on some sort of theme. He's been listening one, called Night Air - The Relaxing Side of Classical Music, and found that he wasn't relaxed at all. While the music is slow and soothing, from Romantic and Impressionist composers like Ravel, Bizet, and Faure, the pieces are mostly excerpts from the larger works. Manoff says the collection focuses more on texture and less on art, ignoring the full range of the composers' artistic expression by just playing the slow parts of their pieces. In one particular example, he recommends listening to the entirerecording of Respighi's Ancient Airs and Dances, rather than just one movement from one suite. (5:30) Night Air: The Relaxing Side of Classical Music is on the Telarc Digital label, catalog number CD-80558.

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