This first volume of selections of his writings brings together many of Brian's principal writings on the composers and events of the British Musical Renaissance from polemical articles written when actively campaigning for his fellow-composers in the Midlands before World War I to more considered appraisals of the inter-War period. As well as discussing a wide range of composers, from Elgar and Delius to Britten and Billy Mayerl, he can be found here reviewing festivals, adjudicating at brass-band championships at the Crystal Palace (and watching the Palace burn down in 1936), proposing schemes for the encouragement of orchestral music, and casting a critical eye on the burgeoning power and influence of the B.B.C. Malcolm MacDonald's substantial introduction and annotations make this book both a work of scholarship and an important historical source for an understanding of the British music of the early twentieth century.
This book documents a major composer's thoughts on his contemporary countrymen. Brian writes lively, if not especially distinguished prose (...) convey(ing) a sense of exciting times that should interest devotees of the British musical century in general. CLASSICAL.NET