The musical critic of the New York Herald Tribune -- in this collection of pieces through a number of years as a commentator on matters musical, proves that he is more than just a columnist, that his own critiques bear witness to his carrying out his own standards and aims as a critic, a judge of the musical scene. His opening chapter sets certain standards for musical criticism, and provides a challenge to the professional rather than the layman. But his individual essays, whether dealing with specific concerts, performance, conductors, artists, orchestras, or whatever, provide the average listener with valuable recall- with standards of comparative values- with thoughtful weighing of trends, measure of performance, New York versus out of town orchestras and artists, development in music overseas, etc. There is a certain news value implicit in his comments on such things as the unbalance of power in the N. Y. Philharmonic, where he feels that management has usurped functions pertaining to musicians; the Koussevitsky case, which- in being brought to legal test, did the harm the book involved would not have done alone; by-products of music and opera, and so on. Definitely a book for the musically inclined and informed.