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1416 albums sorted by Date: from newest to oldest
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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Aparté

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released January 17, 2020 | Warner Classics

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Solo Piano - Released December 6, 2019 | TACET Musikproduktion

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
At first sight, the programme of this album could seem extravagant. Indeed, it assembles into one single volume all of Brahms’ intermezzi, the works that the composer held so dear. In doing so, Evgeni Koroliov isolates them from pieces which Brahms classifies under the same opus number and whose sequence is almost too well-known by music lovers. Frustrated by this fact and inviting us to gloss over it, Koroliov instead explores a more secretive side of Brahms: one of melancholy emotions and solitary twilight walks. And the result is overall successful: there is decidedly no monotony in this suite of slow pieces which Brahms wallowed in throughout his entire life. The almost nonchalant version which the Russian pianist portrays here seems almost to be like a series of improvisations for a few select friends. The seriousness of the expression helps us understand why Schönberg referred to Brahms as “progressive”, just as the “dissonance” of opus 117 to 119 heralds the music of the future, with its harmonic audacity so displeasing to the ears of a certain Clara Schumann, to whom some of the pieces are dedicated. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Solo Piano - Released November 29, 2019 | Sony Classical

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International stardom has made Lang Lang into an ambassador for the classical repertoire. Sony has chosen Beethoven's 250th birthday to release a compilation that was born of a live concert recorded in Vienna, a city which has seen the birth of so many of the composer's works. The collection takes in Sonata No.3 and No.23, also known as Appassionata. These scores are an imaginary battlefield pitting the writer's contending passions against one another. Beethoven, subject to a compulsive inspiration, uses his writing to guide, even contain, this irresistible force: the greatest liberty dammed up by reason, an apparent paradox which his art summarises well. But here Lang Lang gives us an almost fantastical Beethoven. The pianist has fun with a repertoire which exacerbates contrasts thanks to an immense palette of nuances and several liberties taken with the tempos. Although his level of technique permits him such extravagances, it must be said that he is much more conventional with Beethoven than he is with Rachmaninov. You don't fool around with the Master of Bonn. The record closes on a studio version of the first movement of Sonata No.17 (the famous Tempest), recorded for the video game Gran Turismo 5. The rather grandiloquent switch between its Largo and Allegro sections makes its mark on the text. Lang Lang serves up a very literally visual interpretation of this score, built around the most epic settings that these Beethovian storms permit. © Elsa Siffert/Qobuz
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Solo Piano - Released November 15, 2019 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
One never comes across any ordinariness when following Alexandre Tharaud’s career. This new album is as impressive in the originality of its conception as much as its meticulous musical delivery. The French pianist appears to be nostalgic towards two different golden ages: that of 17th-century music, and that of the French piano during the 1950s, specifically Marcelle Meyer’s inspiring playing which Tharaud remains motivated by. The “Versailles” which has attracted Alexandre Tharaud, and serves as the title for this recital is less Louis XIV’s opulent world of wonder and more of an intimate world of secret music. Without any difficulty, the pianist manages to make these pieces specifically written for the harpsichord his own, even going as far as inviting young harpsichordist Justin Taylor to join him for a rendition of Rameau’s Les Sauvages... for four hands on the piano! If the pianist Marcelle Meyer had recorded Rameau and Couperin in an era more liberal than today, Alexandre Tharaud has the audacity to go against musicological rules for the listener’s benefit. Of course, we are accustomed to Bach, Scarlatti, Couperin and Rameau on the modern piano, but Pancrace Royer, Robert de Visée, Jean-Henry D’Anglebert and Jacques Duphly are suddenly thrust into the limelight of this musical collection which incidentally highlights their relevance. © François Hudry/Qobuz
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Classical - Released November 8, 2019 | Channel Classics Records

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Anna Fedorova embraces the Russian and, more generally, romantic repertoires. Her performances with the Nodwestdeutsche Philharmonic Orchestra - given to the Great Hall of the royal Concertgebouw and watchable on her YouTube channel - prove it. The concertos by Tchaïkovski and Rachmaninoff, among others, show a passionate and talented musician of irrefutable technique. On the record, Anna Fedorova adopts the role of a storyteller, the name of her record, her second for the label Channel Classics Records. Her previous record, Four Fantaisies, had already embraced the power of the romantic imagination. Placed under the tutelage of Chopin, Liszt and Scriabin, the Ukrainian pianist acts like a poet making music out of stories. The ballads and sonnets are of epic charm and are sometimes danceable; they are often contemplative and are always filled with a strong poetic nature. The “pages” that Anna Fedorova has lifted from these three composers are episodes of great accomplishment where the piano acts as their herald. While the epic aspect of these works is particularly prevalent, the pianist by no means ignores the more poetic dimensions. For the Sonate No.4, Op.30 by Scriabin, she delivers a version that is both thrilling and fanatic. In less than 9 minutes of music, an entire new world is created (Andante) that unravels into a formidable storm (Prestissimo volando). Anna Fedorova owns this complex score: the melodies break out in surges of great clarity that listeners can delightedly move with. From Chopin to Scriabin, we are observers of a language that continually verges more and more on abstraction and harmonic invention all while witnessing the story of a musician’s development. © Elsa Siffert/Qobuz
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Solo Piano - Released November 1, 2019 | Sony Classical

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Seventeen years after his first Schubert recording, Arcadi Volodos takes us on another dive into the world of Schubert with the very great and very turbulent Sonata in A Major, D.959. Less than two months before his death, Schubert wrote this penultimate sonata, the most fully-developed in terms of the scope of its final movement. In its crepuscular light, it enfolds the darkness of human solitude in Andantino in F Sharp Minor, which protests against a cheap happiness, first with resignation and then with indignation. Then, a cheering, somersaulting call to life, a most Viennese Scherzo, full of insousiance and serenity, which comes before the final and utterly simple movement, which suffers from no "longueur", however "divine"... Preferring intimacy to ostentation, Arcadi Volodos provides a style of expression which is no less captivating for its sobriety. Going from the most gently-whispered pianissimi to extreme fortissimi, his playing style adapts from moment to moment, a velvet touch that paints unique colours. His interior style of performance, its poetic depth, mixed with the classicism of his approach to the work, all add up to an utterly simple and natural Schubertian language. Returning to the very young Schubert, this inspired recital is rounded off with three rare Minuets (including the stunning D.600, which starts out sounding like an aria by Bach), sculpted with peerless grace and purity: a fitting end to a programme of such high musical quality. © GG/Qobuz
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Solo Piano - Released October 25, 2019 | Warner Classics

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - Le Choix de France Musique - Choc de Classica
Pianist Beatrice Rana made a sensation as a teen with some strikingly charismatic and virtuosic performances. Yet since then, she has taken a deliberate approach to her career, recording only periodically and not trying to be in the limelight at all times. Her approach has borne fruit in this release of works by Ravel and Stravinsky, all of them well-traveled except for the single-piano arrangement of La Valse, which is less often played due to its sheer difficulty. Rana dispatches the final swirls of notes confidently, but listen around elsewhere for the incredible variety of articulation, all of it well-considered and contributing to the greater musical whole, of which this pianist is capable. "Oiseaux tristes" (sample this) is not one of the more often excerpted movements from Ravel's Miroirs, yet Rana's sharp articulation of the distressed bird calls makes the scene come uncannily alive. The two Stravinsky ballet transcriptions have forward motion tempered by shading that suggests the original ballet music in numerous ways. To top it all off, Rana's penetrating insights in the notes, and the fine Teldex Studio sound from Parlophone/Warner Classics, and you have an album that announces Rana's progression from promising young player to one of the most important of major artists. Brava!
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Solo Piano - Released October 25, 2019 | Alpha

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
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Solo Piano - Released October 18, 2019 | Decca Music Group Ltd.

Hi-Res Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Choc de Classica
This release, issued to mark the 75th birthday of the great pianist Nelson Freire in 2019, is hardly a typical album of encores. A good deal of it is devoted to a single composer, Edvard Grieg. Other composers are represented by multiple works, and there are substantial pieces like the Rachmaninov Prelude in B minor, Op. 32, No. 10, that would not fill the role of encore well. You might take the word "encore" in another way, though: to mean things reprised. Many of these pieces are ones Freire knows well, has played many times, and has explored at a truly breathtaking level of detail. The Grieg Lyric Pieces are not virtuoso works, and indeed are often played by amateurs, but you haven't heard them played like Freire plays them, with each one a little study in phrasing and register. You could sample almost anywhere here, but try the first of the Shostakovich Fantastic Dances, Op. 5, which has an entrancing subtlety from the very first notes. Freire, a famed virtuoso, mostly avoids showpieces here, but, as if to say he hasn't lost the ability, he does drop some in. The album is, then, an encore to Freire's remarkable career, which isn't over yet.
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Keyboard Concertos - Released October 11, 2019 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason
Daniil Trifonov's journey around the world of Rachmaninov is at an end. The pianist has arrived safely into the harbour with Yannick Nézet-Seguin's Philadelphia Orchestra. This finale was inspired by the bells which are ubiquitous in the Great Russian soundscape. Alain Corbin explained their importance to the rhythmic and symbolic scansion of everyday life in 19th Century France in his book Village Bells. To the historian's analysis, we can now add the testimony of the pianist – who, like Rachmaninov, grew up in Novgorod. Russian bells leant Russian music its nobility and colouring of folk nostalgia. Daniil Trifonov hasn't forgotten this, as is clear from his piano transcription of the first episode of Les Cloches. He was wise enough to respect the operatic power of the score and the splendour of its orchestration: harp, celesta and flutes are all truly transformed into bells in the hands of a musician who stays true to the aura of disquieting oddness (with its shades of Edgar Allen Poe) which surrounds the first movement. His technique matches his capricious and bubbling imagination. While we might find ourselves yawning a little at the Vocalise, the first and third Concertos move us from thrilling ecstasies to tears of pleasure. A very fine record, in which the orchestra, perhaps a little distant, fulfils its role as a soundbox for the soloist. © Elsa Siffert/Qobuz