Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Schumann & Brahms: Piano Quintets

“With an almost ideal balance between piano and strings, the variety of articulation in their playing brings a marvellous textural variety to the full-blooded writing in the outer movements of the Brahms. …the performances… can be confidently recommended as among the finest modern recordings of both works.” --BBC Music Magazine *****

“Andsnes, whose playing is full of personality, and the Artemis Quartet, who have a fine presence, give a magisterial account of the Brahms and are no less compelling in the Schumann.” -- The Penguin Guide 2011

“Leif Ove Andsnes has an uncanny knack of revealing the inner truth of the music he plays without recourse to excessive gimmickry. He also has exquisite taste when it comes to choosing his chamber music collaborators, as this pairing of the two cornerstones of the piano quintet repertoire demonstrates.

Schumann's Quintet has become the most famous of his chamber works, with its boundless energy and melodic generosity. Andsnes and the Artemis let the notes speak for themselves, never lingering too lovingly on mere details. It's an approach that serves the work well, and an ideal instrumental balance helps illuminate the work's compelling textures throughout.

It's a similar story in the Brahms. Andsnes and the Artemis are alive to all the possibilities in the pregnant opening phrases of each movement and maintain the intensity of the impetuous passion implicit in this youthful music. The Brahms hasn't fared as well on disc as the Schumann and this recording of it can certainly take its place among the finest. As for the Schumann, it's undoubtedly up there with the best.” --The Gramophone Classical Music Guide 2010

MP3 320 · 152 MB

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