Quarterly Critic’s Choice

The best and most interesting new releases of the previous three months are awarded a place on the Quarterly Critic’s Choice. Evaluation criteria are artistic quality, repertoire value, presentation, and sound quality. From 2014 onward, the Long Lists are stored directly with each Quarterly Critic’s Choice.

NEW: Long List 3/2024, published on 5th July 2024

Quarterly Critic’s Choice

Quarterly Critic’s Choices before 2010



Published: 15. November 2008

DVD and Video Productions

  • John Adams: Doctor Atomic. Het Muziektheater Amsterdam, Stage Direction: Peter Sellars. Opus Arte OA 0998 D (2 DVDs; Naxos)
  • Gustav Mahler: Symphony No. 3. Lucerne Festival Orchestra, Claudio Abbado. Medici Arts DVD 2056 338 (Naxos)
  • Knorkator: Weg after unten. Tubareckorz TUBA 0815 (2 DVDs; Soulfood)


  • Jean-Baptiste Lully: Proserpine. Salomé Haller, Benedicte Tauran, Stephanie d’Oustrac et al.; Le Concert Spirituel, Hervé Niquet. Glossa GCD 921 615 (2 CDs; Note 1)
  • Jean-Baptiste Lully: Psyché. Carolyn Sampson, Karina Gauvin, et al.; Boston Early Music Festival Chorus & Orchestra, Stephen Stubbs. cpo 777 367-2 (3 CDs; jpc)

Orchestral Music and Concertos

  • Olivier Messiaen: Orchestral Works. Sinfonieorchester des Südwestfunks Baden-Baden und Freiburg, Sylvain Cambreling. Hänssler Classic 93.225 (8 CDs; Naxos)
  • Igor Strawinsky: L’Oiseau de feu, Le Sacre du printemps. Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Mariss Jansons. RCO Live 08002 (SACD; Codaex)
  • Benjamin Britten: Piano Concerto D major, Young Apollo, Diversions. Steven Osborne (Piano), BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Ilan Volkov. Hyperion CDA 67 625 (Codaex)

Chamber Music

  • Robert Schumann: Violin Sonatas Nos. 1–3. Carolin Widmann (Violin), Dénes Várjon (Piano). ECM New Series 2047 (Universal)

Keyboard Music

  • Charles Koechlin: »… des jardins enchantés…« – Piano Works Vol. 1. Michael Korstick (Piano). Hänssler 93.220 (Naxos)
  • Johann Sebastian Bach: Music for Lute-Harpsichord. Suites BWV 995–997, 1006a et al. Elizabeth Farr (Lute Harpsichord). Naxos 8.570 470/71 (2 CDs)

Choral Works

  • Charles Ives: Psalms. SWR Vokalensemble, Marcus Creed. Hänssler Classic 93.224 (Naxos)

Early Music

  • John Dowland: In darkness let me dwell. Dorothee Mields, Hille Perl, Lee Santana, The Sirius Viols. Deutsche Harmonia Mundi 88697 36213 2 (Sony BMG)
  • O felice morire. Arias and Madrigals Florence, 1600. Works by Giulio Caccini, Andrea Falconieri, Giovanni Girolamo Kapsberger, Stefano Landi et al. Joel Frederiksen (Bass, Lute and Musical Direction), Ensemble Phoenix Munich. Harmonia Mundi France HMC 901 999 (Helikon Harmonia Mundi)

Lieder and Vocal Recital

  • Georg Friedrich Händel: Sento Brillar – Arias for Carestini. Vesselina Kasarova, Il Complesso Barocco, Alan Curtis. RCA 88697 31871-2 (Sony BMG)
  • René Pape – Gods, Kings & Demons. Arias by Wagner, Gounod, Mussorgsky and Mozart. Staatskapelle Dresden, Sebastian Weigle. Deutsche Grammophon 477 6408 (Universal)

Historical Recordings

  • The Art of Dimitri Mitropoulos Vol. 1: Works by Berg, Beethoven, Strawinsky, Schumann, Strauss and Busoni. NBC Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra (Recordings 1941-1957). Music & Arts MACD 1213 (4 CDs; Note 1)
  • Peter Anders – Die unvergessene Voice. Membran 232 116 (10 CDs; SPV)

Contemporary Classical Music

  • Mark André: durch; …zu…; …in; …als… II. Trio Accanto, ensemble recherche, Shizuyo Oka (Bass Clarinet), Experimentalstudio des Südwestrundfunk. Kairos KAI 001273 2 (SACD; Helikon Harmonia Mundi)
  • Salvatore Sciarrino: Storie di altre storie. Sonia Turchetta, Teodoro Anzellotti, WDR Sinfonieorchester Köln, Kazushi Ono, Lukas Vis. Winter & Winter 919 144 2 (Edel)

Film Music

  • James Newton Howard, Hans Zimmer: The Dark Knight. Warner Music Group 9362-49860-0

Spoken Word

  • Franz Werfel: Verdi. Wolfram Berger (Reader). Winter & Winter ISBN 978-3-86790-005-8 (2 MP3-CDs; Edel)

Pop and Rock

  • Brian Wilson: That Lucky Old Sun. Capitol Records 50999 234830 2 6 (EMI)
  • Lykke Li: Youth Novels. LL Recordings 50514 428248 2 7 (Warner)

Nu and Extreme

  • Flying Lotus: Los Angeles. Warp CD165 (Rough Trade)

German Songs, Folk and Folklore

  • Kai Degenhardt: Weiter draußen. plattenbau 08016
  • La Cherga: Fake No More. Asphalt Tango Records ATR 1708 (Indigo)
  • Marina Rossell: Classics catalans. world village wv 498 023 (CD+DVD; Helikon Harmonia Mundi)

Traditional Ethnic Music

  • Music of Myanmar: Buddhist Chant in the Pali Tradition. Celestial Harmonies 14 219-2 (2 CDs; Naxos)
  • Moshe Berlin Ensemble: Aneinu! Hasidic-Orthodox Music from the Festival of the Torah in Jerusalem. Wergo SM 1628 2 (Note 1)

World Music

  • Buika: Niña de Fuego. DRO Atlantic 82564 69547 7 3 (Galileo)
  • Mariza: Terra. EMI 5099922942326

Jazz and Blues

  • Nils Wogram & Root 70: On 52nd 1/4 Street. Intuition Music INT 3423 2 (Sunny Moon)
  • E.S.T. Esbjörn Svensson Trio: Leucocyte. ACT 9018-2 (Edel)
  • Abdullah Ibrahim: Senzo. Intuition Music INT 3428 2 (Sunny Moon)
  • Watermelon Slim & The Workers: No Paid Holidays. Northern Blues NBM 0047 (New Music)
  • Jens Filser Bluesband: Picks & Licks. Valve Records 2087

Recordings for Children and Youth

  • Marko Simsa: Das Zookonzert. Marko Simsa (Reader), Erke Duit (Music). Jumbo ISBN: 978-3-8337-2231-8

Crossover Productions

  • Conny Bauer: Der gelbe Klang. Jazzwerkstatt JW 038 (Records Vertriebsges.)