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Classical - Released January 1, 2010 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Booklet Distinctions Diapason d'or - 4F de Télérama

Classical - Released July 4, 2008 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Distinctions Diapason d'or - 9 de Classica-Répertoire

Classical - Released August 11, 2017 | Ondine

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason - Gramophone Editor's Choice

Classical - Released January 1, 2011 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Booklet Distinctions 5 de Diapason

Classical - Released January 1, 2012 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Distinctions 4 étoiles de Classica

Classical - Released January 1, 2008 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)

Distinctions Exceptional Sound Productions

Classical - Released March 30, 2018 | PentaTone

Hi-Res Booklet Distinctions Gramophone Editor's Choice
Can the title of a work influence the way that performers approach it? At any rate, Messiaen's two great piano masterpieces have titles which suggest very different musical experiences. Vingt Regards sur l’Enfant-Jésus (1944) is steeped in religious fervour and contemplation, while Catalogue d’oiseaux (1956–1958) is a work with rather more of an ornithological bent. Indeed, the composer himself said to Claude Samuel: "I tried to render exactly the song of a bird typical of a given region, surrounded by its neighbours in that habitat, as well as expressions of its song at different times of day and night." But then he goes on to describe a more expressive and poetic side of the work. Birdsong, effectively, "bears in its harmonic and rhythmic material the scents and colours of the country in which the bird lives", and it is hardly possible to "exactly" transcribe the improbable rapidity of birdsong for any human instrument. One might have thought that "sonic reproduction" was the key idea behind the Catalogue d'oiseaux, but in the finished work, what we are listening to is a great composer, a master of innovative structures, finding a stunning range of piano sounds. In other words, in spite of its name, the Catalogue d’oiseaux is not a musical documentary, but rather a series of musical poems exploring birds and other wonders of nature – in France, as that is where all these delightful flying things happened to be found. Pierre-Laurent Aimard gives a reading of the (diabolical) score which is both super-precise and rigorous, and yet so poetic and inspired that one has the impression that he is taking dictation directly from the birds themselves. © SM/Qobuz

Classical - Released January 1, 2008 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)


Classical - Released January 1, 2008 | Universal Music Division Classics Jazz


Classical - Released January 28, 1997 | Sony Classical


Classical - Released July 12, 2005 | Warner Classics International


Classical - Released May 1, 2006 | Warner Classics International


Classical - Released July 12, 2005 | Warner Classics International


Classical - Released January 1, 2002 | Universal Music


Classical - Released January 1, 1995 | Deutsche Grammophon (DG)