Reviews

Virtuoso: Music for Organ DVD

"An exhilarating, mostly French recital on a sumptuous Yorkshire instrument... Daniel Moult holds nothing back in his programme of 20th-century tours de force, the video camera giving the best possible vantage point of the console...Dupré's Trois Préludes et Fugues are rattled off with the lightest of touches; similarly, Duruflé's Toccata spins sweetly and evenly to its brilliant conclusion...One of this disc's great virtues is that nothing outlasts its welcome. Alain's superb miniature Fantasmagorie ... makes an excellent adjunct to Schmidt's teutonically thorough Toccata. Messiaen's effervescent Transports de joie makes a sparkling conclusion to a thrilling production. Simon Eadon's ideal recorded balance has caught a strong stereo image...allowing one to marvel even more at Moult's exhilarating musicianship" Gramophone

"There is no doubt that Daniel Moult is a virtuoso...formidable technique...the photography is excellent and the building well-lit...There are close-ups of Moult's agile fingers and he demonstrates just how effortless playing something like Duruflé's Toccata can be. The music...contains some wonderful gems and ends with an exhilarating performance of Transports de Joie. Moult is an impressive player...and gives powerful readings of all the pieces...he brings out the vast range of expression and tone...Good camera work and virtuosic playing come together for a satisfying experience."
Organists' Review  

 "Daniel Moult's playing is, from the outset, dazzling...the DVD content [is] comprehensive and interesting...The programme, a tour-de-force of twentieth-century virtuoso works is well-designed, and Daniel Moult manages to avoid the danger of constant bravura becoming tedious... Messiaen's Transports de Joie which ends the programme is quite brilliant... the disc is a real winner."
The Organ 

"...Organ performance videos have a strong part to play in lifting organ loft anonymity and persuading the public that organists' unique combination of performance skills are every bit as demanding as those of any headlining artist at Carnegie Hall or the Concertgebouw. Here, the open console at Bridlington Priory...lends itself to bright, even lighting in a directorial approach which, as befits the DVD's title, concentrates on Moult's exceptionally fluid keyboard and pedal technique. Hundreds of thousands of key strokes whizz by as Moult works his way through toccatas...he demonstrates a contained virtuosity with no need of Lisztian wild hair, arm-waving, catsuit or rhinestone sparkle. To the lay observer, he risks making it all look deceptively easy; but this is a DVD that serious students of the organ will want to revisit for an object lesson in the unfussy performance of some fiendishly difficult repertoire..." ****
Choir & Organ 

 "Daniel Moult has proved his brilliant technique... this organ is a treasure which is equal to European standards...Daniel Moult has a world-renowned reputation..."  
The Sydney Organ Journal 

 "...very fine production..."
Ad Wammes  (composer)

The Elusive English Organ DVD

 "...a joy of a film that should be screened on BBC3!"
The Organ 

 "...hearing and seeing some of the surviving instruments will delight listeners to whom they are unfamiliar...engaging narration...This is eloquently articulated, well-paced playing, which reaches far. Moult's performance of Purcell's Double Organ Voluntary in D minor is lovely in its maturity and flexibility, and Stanley's Voluntary, Op. 5, no. 8 likewise...what pleasures this CD offers..."
Organists' Review 

"... his sheer enthusiasm for the organs and their music [is] extremely infectious, and this, of course, comes across on the DVD, but especially on the magnificent accompanying CD, containing definitive performances of works by Byrd, Purcell, S Wesley and Stanley amongst others...the performances...sound wonderfully natural and ebullient...Watching the DVD is a relief, especially after watching many an organ video in darker times, whose production values and camera work often owed much to the Blair Witch Project. The quality is superb, as is the recorded organ sound on the DVD, as well as, of course, the CD accompanying....Hats off to Daniel and the team for substantially raising the bar on organ DVDs. My only caveat was that I wanted more I will eagerly seek out the other DVDs from Fugue State Films in the series."
The Sydney Organ Journal 

 "...Daniel Moult proves to be an excellent presenter and performer...Moult infuses an engaging film with a fascination for his subject, amply illustrated with beautifully played musical examples. It walks the tightrope between specialist film and documentary designed to enthuse a broader public...[an] extremely accomplished film about a subject every bit as elusive as the subject suggests...his control of the historic instruments is always excellent... Will Fraser's beautifully made organ-related films are a fascinating development in the integration of the organ culture into the wider artistic world. This film tackles a tricky subject with considerable aplomb..." ****
Choir & Organ

**** "...sympathetic performances of works from Byrd to Samuel Wesley"
BBC Music Magazine

Arundel Restored CD

"The organ's west end position, wrapping its rather spectacular case around a rose window, combined with the cathedral's excellent acoustics put the icing on the cake in terms of the likelihood of this being a really splendid sound, and the listener is not disappointed. The program chosen for this recording is a completely apposite blend of Victoriana/Edwardiana, original compositions and transcriptions, with some interesting late twentieth and early twenty-first century additions. Excelsior! is Liszt's own arrangement... and makes a fine curtain raiser...The Stanford will be remembered by those present at Daniel Moult's recent Sydney recital, and is particularly at home in this musical environment. The more modem pieces fare equally well with Brumba...being a personal favourite...these days, perhaps thanks to ease of travel and sound recording, we seem to be much more aware of what makes an appropriate program for a particular instrument. This CD is proof of that pudding without a doubt. At the risk of turning these columns into The Daniel Moult Fan Club Newsletter, it has to be said that he is on particularly fine form in this recording, with playing, registrations, and liner notes, all well up to his usual standard. This recording has everything going for it and, at the further risk of becoming The Regent Records Fan Club, is yet another triumph for Gary and Pippa Cole. Thoroughly recommended!"
Sydney Organ Journal

"This is a very fine sounding organ in a magnificent space...Remarkably, this is the instrument's first solo recording and Daniel Moult plays with his usual virtuosity and panache. The highlight for me is his insightful and wholly apt rendition of W.T. Best's grand transcription of a Handel organ concerto - a brilliant piece of historically informed performance practice in which the organ revels. Stanford's Fantasia and Toccata also fit the instrument like a glove."
**** Choir and Organ

"It is surprising that this is the first solo recording of the restored William Hill organ at Arundel...well-demonstrated in music by Handel (W.T. Best arrangement), Mozart, Mendelssohn, Liszt, Stanford and Saint-Saëns. But Daniel Moult also shows his virtuosity in three more recent pieces which should attract extra purchasers for this disc... Graham Fitkin's Wedding, written for a friend's wedding and driving to an exhilarating climax."
*** [top star rating] Church Music Quarterly

"Daniel Moult here appropriately aims to capture the flavour of the period's concerts with a mixture of hefty classics, some slighter pieces, and some new music, using many transcriptions and not drawing any sharp distinction between sacred and secular… Things get bouncier with the Saint-Saens Danse Macabre, a bright and bubbly Handel concerto, and the more heart-on-sleeve Stanford, which, although written 20 years later, sounds completely at home on this instrument. The Stanford Toccata, if lightweight at times, shows off both organ and player perfectly. Of the three recent works, Fitkin's Wedding is…a beautiful six-minute piece…The five movements of the Bourgeois Variations are striking in that they are so Howellsian throughout, yet could never actually be Howells - an original tribute to the composer's teacher. The final Patterson track is virtuosic… it would certainly make Stanford tilt a little in his grave and concludes a well-selected programme with yet another showcase for this fine instrument. There are good notes on both music and organ."
Organists' Review

"Daniel Moult demonstrates it through a programme of music of the sort which would frequently have been featured in recitals in the 19th century, though there is a nod to the 20th and 21st centuries to acknowledge the ongoing expansion of the organ repertoire. Edwin Lemare's arrangement of Saint-Saëns' Danse Macabre does a good job in showcasing many different registrations so as to preserve the orchestral timbres of the original as closely as possible...Moult's virtuosic fingerwork on the manuals is evident in the dancing semiquavers of Graham Fitkin's Wedding, and in the Toccata of Stanford's Fantasia and Toccata in D minor...the music is very much alive in Moult's hands"
**** The Organ

'...the recording is of the usual impeccable standard we have come to expect from Regent Records, allowing us to appreciate the excellent playing of Mr Moult'
Cross Rhythms

Performances:

".... one of the finest organists of our time...Moult began spiritedly with Handel's 4th Concerto as refracted through the fertile imagination of W. T. Best, including a quite impure and thoroughly delightful cadenza. Mr Moult revelled in what is misguidedly thought of nowadays as wickedness!

Bach's 'violin' Fugue in D minor BWV539 followed in a spritely tempo that no violinist could ever hope to emulate. Two of Elgar's Vesper Voluntaries and Mendelssohn's D major Variations were lovingly played as if part of a personal conversation in a Victorian drawing-room, and the recital concluded with an exuberant account of Dubois' very naughty Toccata. More, please!"
The Organ (re: Summer Arts Festival 2010, Vauxhall)

"awesome...a recital which will linger long and happily in the memory for its originality of idea, technical brilliance and bravura and life enhancing charisma!"
Oundle International Organ Festival

"This was, quite simply, some of the most outstanding playing we've heard in these Cathedral recitals, and not just this year"
Derby Evening Telegraph

"One of the most charismatic and engaging young players of today, Daniel Moult's infectious enthusiasm for music-making is justly renowned throughout the country"
International Organ Series, All Souls' Langham Place, London

"The recital...was one of the most enthralling I have ever attended. Daniel spoke entertainingly about each piece and communicated his enthusiasm in playing of flawless technical fluency coupled with strong characterisation in every performance.... The fugue [BWV 532ii] , taken at a breathtakingly quick pace, making light of the taxing pedal part, was delivered with stunning technical and rhythmic control... The first half concluded with the clearest and most coherent performance of [Liszt's] B.A.C.H I have ever heard.  The second half consisted entirely of 20th century repertoire, ranging from Dupré's Prelude & Fugue in B major to much more recent pieces from Australia and the Netherlands. Graeme Koehne's Gothic Toccata proved to be a particularly engaging piece, constructed from a five note motif and building up to an impressive climax... in Jehan Alain's Fantasmagoire...the humour of this piece was well conveyed. Dupré's exultant Prelude & Fugue brought this well chosen, interesting recital to a joyous conclusion in a performance which made its formidable difficulties seem so effortless."
I.A.O Bexley Organists' Association

"...from the impeccably phrased opening of Bach's Prelude and Fugue in G major (BWV 541) onwards it was clear that his playing...would be anything but routine. So Mozart's Fantasia in F minor ... (K608) sounded – appropriately enough – almost inhumanly polished and precise, but Moult also plumbed the emotional depths of this, one of Mozart's greatest instrumental works...under Moult's fingers (and feet) the outer movements of Mendelssohn's Sonata in B flat major positively crackled with energy... Three lovingly-played miniatures, Elgar's F major Vesper Voluntary and Whitlock's Divertimento and Folk Tune, proved a perfect foil to the rumbustious Finale that was Brumba. Moult's witty and informative introductions to the music were almost as entertaining as his playing, and gave more than a hint as to why he is so sought after as a teacher, and ambassador for, the organ."
I.A.O Suffolk Organists' Association 

"I am convinced that his contribution to the organ art will be remarkable"
Jacques van Oortmerssen

"I really appreciate your remarkable playing, your wonderful manner with both audiences and your amenable attitude..."
Ariel Valent, Melbourne Town Hall

"A magnificent effort, and you did our chapel organ proud – please come back sometime!"
Robert Fox, Organist, Sydney Church of England Grammar School