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Classical - Released June 13, 2011 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4F de Télérama - Gramophone Record of the Month - Diamant d'Opéra Magazine - 4 étoiles de Classica
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Concertos - Released January 1, 2012 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Record of the Month - Diapason d'or / Arte - Qobuzissime - Hi-Res Audio
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Solo Piano - Released February 9, 2018 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Record of the Month - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
Oh no, no, no: this is absolutely not a re-release of one of the many recordings which Murray Perahia made of Beethoven over the decades. This here is something completely new, made in 2016 and 2017, of two radically contrasting sonatas: the Fourteenth of 1801, which Rellstab nicknamed "Clair de lune" in 1832, while Beethoven merely dubbed it Quasi una fantasia, and the Twenty Ninth of 1819, Große Sonate für das Hammerklavier, written after several barren years. Perhaps, consciously or not, Perahia has coupled two works, one "before" and the other "after" - after all, he himself has known his fair share of fallow years, following a hand injury which removed him from the stage from 1990 to 2005. Whether or not it's true, it's certainly tempting to imagine. Either way, like Beethoven, Perahia made a storming return, as shown in this recent performance, in which vigour alternates with moments of intense introspection, always impeccably phrased and articulated, and deeply musical. Clearly all those years in which he concentrated almost exclusively on the works of Bach as a training regime while he waited for recovery seem to have in fact been immensely fruitful. © SM/Qobuz
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Duets - Released June 3, 2016 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or de l'année - Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica - Exceptional sound
The adventure began in 2012, when Gilles Ledure, director of Flagey (Brussels), suggested to Lorenzo Gatto and Julien Libeer they should perform the complete Beethoven violin sonatas there. For these two artists, Beethoven was ‘perhaps the first composer in our history to have embodied the values of the Enlightenment in both his music and his life’. Haunted by these monuments of architecture and expression, they decided to embark on a recording. Here are three sonatas recorded in the legendary Salle de Musique of La Chaux-de-Fonds, including the famous ‘Kreutzer’ Sonata. Since his version of the Beethoven Violin Concerto (ZZT 354), Lorenzo Gatto has taken his place among the violinists who matter on the international scene.
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Chamber Music - Released September 29, 2017 | Evidence

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4 étoiles de Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Jazz
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Classical - Released February 7, 2012 | Zig-Zag Territoires

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Pianiste Maestro - Choc de Classica - Exceptional sound
Franz Liszt's transcriptions of Beethoven's symphonies date from different phases of his career. His attitude toward his symphonic transcriptions and other non-pianistic works is difficult to determine: he rarely played such transcriptions in concert, and they may have been at least partly commercial in motivation. But he wrote a great many of them and was plainly interested in the project, furnishing one set of Beethoven publications with a preface (reproduced in the booklet here) in which he proclaims that Beethoven's symphonies "cannot be meditated enough." These transcriptions have occasionally been performed, but this outing by Russian pianist Yury Martynov is a standout. One attraction is the piano: the 1837 Erard is nearly contemporaneous with the transcription of the Symphony No. 6 in F major, Op. 68 ("Pastoral"), and even for the Symphony No. 2 in D major, Op. 36, composed in the mid-1860s, it serves well. It's a remarkable instrument, with rich but clear tones in pedaled passages, and it seems uncannily well attuned to Liszt's intentions here. These pieces lie somewhere between transcriptions and interpretations, and, especially in the "Pastoral" rendering, Liszt does not hesitate to omit orchestral details in favor of the larger narrative, often letting density adjustments stand in for those details. Martynov is magical in passages like the fourth-movement storm in the "Pastoral" symphony, where Liszt augments the action with some chromatic rolls in the bass; throughout this symphony he gets fabulous results with the pedal, giving the listener an idea of how Liszt heard Beethoven and also of what a technically startling pianist Liszt himself was. The "Pastoral" seems to shimmer throughout with the Romantic mysticism Beethoven intended, and the entire album is a triumph for the idea of recording 19th-century music on original instruments.
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Classical - Released January 29, 2013 | Zig-Zag Territoires

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année - Hi-Res Audio
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Quartets - Released June 12, 2013 | Myrios Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica - 4 étoiles de Classica - Hi-Res Audio
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Quartets - Released June 10, 2013 | Myrios Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica - 4 étoiles de Classica - Hi-Res Audio
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Trios - Released July 20, 2018 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique - 5 étoiles de Classica
With this new series entitled ‘Salon de musique’, Alpha presents recordings made by artists who have enlivened the Festival of Salon de Provence for some years now: the pianist Eric le Sage, who has made many recordings for Alpha, the clarinettist Paul Meyer etc… with cellist Claudio Bohórquez, they have now put two Beethoven trios on disc. By 1798, the year Ludwig van Beethoven composed his Trio for piano, clarinet and cello op.11, he was already well-known in Vienna as a remarkable improviser and an ambitious young composer. the piece was clearly aimed at the enlightened aristocracy, as well as competent musical amateurs. This did not prevent the critics, though universally positive, from judging the score to be over-complex in places. Dedicated to the Empress Marie-Theresa of Austria, the Septet was published in 1802 by Hofmeister, and on being well-received it was then rearranged for various combinations. Beethoven himself made a version for clarinet, cello and piano, op.38 in E Flat major – the one recorded here. © Alpha Classics
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Symphonies - Released February 5, 2016 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica - Choc Classica de l'année
Nothing new under the sun ? Oh but yes! This recording of the Fourth and Fifth Symphonies of Beethoven by the venerable Nikolaus Harnoncourt lives and breathes brand new. The difference is most notable seeing as he calls on an instrumentarium (along the lines of what Beethoven had in his time) particularly wind-based, whose sound is frankly different from what we know today. Listeners beware: you'll never listen to these two Beethoven symphonies with the same ear once you've had a taste of the original fountain that is sourced here in the 85th year of Harnoncourts wonderful musical mind © SM / Qobuz
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Masses, Passions, Requiems - Released June 3, 2016 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Gramophone Editor's Choice - 4 étoiles de Classica
In July 2015, just eight months before his death, Nikolaus Harnoncourt conducted spiritual opus of Beethoven, the enigmatic and titanic Missa Solemnis, for a final time. It was a work that he addressed very late in his career, with 1988 being the first time. At the head of his Concentus Musicus and the Arnold Schönberg Choir, he produces an uncluttered reading, stripped of all excess weight that has restricted so many conductors in the past, including the most famous. It’s almost like attending a huge Mass! Both the Piano and silence are key, allowing the monument to emerge in all its grandeur from the calm. Suddenly the lines become clear and intelligible, the "lengths" acquire their entire purpose... what we see from the old lion Harnoncourt here is most extraordinary, with his ability to allow the listener to peer into the soul of Beethoven. If there is only one record to keep... © SM / Qobuz
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Classical - Released May 15, 2012 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama - Hi-Res Audio
Even though hearing Ludwig van Beethoven's Diabelli Variations, Op. 120, performed by Andreas Staier on a fortepiano, may be the main selling point of this 2012 release on Harmonia Mundi, it seems to take second place when the CD's curiosities are considered. Viennese publisher Anton Diabelli challenged a number of Austrian composers to devise variations on his original waltz, and though Beethoven's set of 33 variations has come down to us as the most memorable result of this contest, one almost never hears any of the variations composed by the likes of Carl Czerny, Johann Nepomuk Hummel, Frédéric Kalkbrenner, Joseph Kerkowsky, Conradin Kreutzer, Franz Liszt, Ignaz Moscheles, Johann Peter Pixis, Franz Xaver Wolfgang Mozart, or Franz Schubert. Diabelli collected 50 variations from as many living composers, which he published as Part II of Vaterländischer Künstlerverein. But Beethoven's magisterial set was published as Part I, so Staier's reversal of the parts on this recording is strategic, to entice the listener to try the less familiar variations first, and even offering his own witty variation as an Introduction, before heading straightway into Beethoven's richly developed work. The recital is totally convincing, and Staier's plan works, because hearing the variations in their published order would have been anti-climactic, since Beethoven's monumental music dwarfs even the cleverest of his contemporaries' efforts. Staier's playing is energetic, fun, and exciting, and the sonorities he pulls out of the modern copy of a Conrad Graf fortepiano are surprisingly robust and in-tune. Harmonia Mundi's sound seems to come in and out of focus, due to the acoustics of the room, but overall it is a pleasantly resonant recording that gives the instrument its due.
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Trios - Released February 24, 2014 | harmonia mundi

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Choc de Classica - Qobuzissime - Hi-Res Audio
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Keyboard Concertos - Released November 3, 2014 | Aparté

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4 étoiles de Classica - Qobuzissime
Into the crowded field containing pairings of Beethoven's first two piano concerto come pianist Louis Schwizgebel (formerly Schwizgebel-Wang) and conductor Thierry Fischer, leading the London Philharmonic Orchestra. They make a mark precisely by not treating these two Beethoven concertos as a pair, but as distinctive entities as disparate as any pair of early piano sonatas might be. The Piano Concerto No. 1 in C major, Op. 15, was actually composed after the Piano Concerto No. 2 in B flat major, Op. 19, but in the hands of Schwizgebel and Fischer, who shape both works with an unusual depth of dialogue, it is the later first concerto that really looks back to Mozart. The first-movement orchestral exposition, under Fischer, even evokes Mozart's Paris works in its smooth lightness, answered by Schwizgebel with a kind of relaxed wit that spins out into the longer Beethoven cadenza. The Piano Concerto No. 2, by contrast, is ebullient, even rollicking, with the finale taken at a brisk clip that sets Schwizgebel's sharp accents against the LPO's winds in a wiry, enthusiastic finale. These are both distinctive Beethoven performances at a very high level, and they apparently mark the beginning of a Beethoven cycle that ought to offer much to look forward to.
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Keyboard Concertos - Released November 10, 2017 | Sony Classical

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4 étoiles de Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik
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Solo Piano - Released May 20, 2016 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice - Choc de Classica
He is nicknamed ‘the poet of the piano’, an epithet confirmed by each of his appearances in concert or on record, most recently with his multi-award-winning Debussy and Chopin albums. Nelson Goerner already has an imposing discography, but this is the first time he has tackled Beethoven on a recording: he has chosen the ‘Hammerklavier’, a work of unparalleled dimensions, complexity and profundity . . . But is this artist, whom a Buenos Aires newspaper praised after a recital at the famous Teatro Colon for his ‘ability to combine intellectual lucidity, undeniable depth, and a technical ease that enables him to express his ideas’, not the perfect interpreter for that monumental composition? ‘Here is a sonata that will make pianists work hard’, said Beethoven to his publisher after labouring on it for almost three years, at a time when his deafness was constantly worsening. Forty-five minutes of immense difficulty for the performer (and also the listener?): between a first movement as fiery as Beethoven ever wrote and a finale that seems to foreshadow jazz improvisations, comes a splendid and deeply moving slow movement that Goerner renders with deep emotion. He then invites us to move from the monumental to the miniature, with the Six Bagatelles op.126, subtle gems of late Beethovenian style, constructed with formidable skill.
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Quartets - Released April 1, 2013 | Zig-Zag Territoires

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Record of the Month - Hi-Res Audio
Because the Belcea Quartet has divided the string quartets of Ludwig van Beethoven between two box sets, and arranged them so that early, middle, and late works appear in each volume, newcomers to this music may find the program a bit arbitrary and slightly complicated. Undoubtedly, the Belcea wants listeners to approach these landmark works with new ears, and to prevent the expectations that come with time-honored groupings. Hearing the three "Razumovsky" quartets played together, for example, or the Grosse Fuge with its original parent work, Op. 130, listeners might lose that most essential feature in Beethoven, the element of surprise. And the Belcea is quite good at surprises. The group takes pains to articulate the quartets in unpredictable ways, giving each part a strong character, accentuating passages that are often smoothed over, and providing an edginess that maintains suspense. Tempos are on the brisk side, and the string tone is sometimes brusque and even rough, with a kind of grit that is almost harsh. The tension is at its most pronounced in the Grosse Fuge, which is played with a manic frenzy that tangles the counterpoint to the point of incomprehensibility and makes the work unnecessarily grotesque. However, this is an extreme case, and the remaining works are played with less aggressiveness and more humanity. By far the loveliest playing is in the slow movements, particularly in the tender Cavatina of Op. 130, and the sublime Lento assai of Op. 135. Still, taken as a whole, the Belcea's interpretations are bracing and vigorous by most standards, and listeners should sample this set extensively before purchasing.
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Chamber Music - Released December 6, 2011 | BIS

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or de l'année - Diapason d'or - Choc de Classica
Beethoven's trios for violin, viola, and cello remain among his least-played works. They seem to point back to the occasional chamber music of the Classical period, and if they're not given the proper attention, that's exactly what they do. But Beethoven himself thought enough even of the very early String Trio in E flat major, Op. 3 (1794), to supervise a keyboard arrangement of the work in the 1810s, and the Op. 9 set heard here, composed in 1798, is almost as ambitious as the group of Op. 18 string quartets that followed it by about a year, and for which it can be seen as a kind of study. The hard, weighty performances by the Trio Zimmermann command attention for these works. Hear the way it sculpts out the jagged opening melodic material of the climactic String Trio in C minor, Op. 9/3, or lay into the quasi-orchestral finale of the first trio of the set. There's a good deal of motivic work here that forecasts the density of Beethoven's mature chamber music language. The trio's Stradivarius and Guarneri instruments boom out attractively under the care of BIS' engineers, who worked in two different spaces: the first and third trios were recorded at a former Swedish music academy, and the second at a Berlin concert hall. The sonic environment is none the worse for that, and the album is a prime pick for anyone in search of these trios, which now seem to play a greater role in Beethoven's early output than has been realized.
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Symphonies - Released October 7, 2014 | SDG

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - 4 étoiles de Classica - 5 Sterne Fono Forum Klassik