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Classical - Released March 28, 2011 | Saphir Productions

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Chamber Music - Released March 18, 2016 | Onyx Classics

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The three violin sonatas on James Ehnes' and Andrew Armstrong's 2016 release on Onyx Classics were composed between 1915 and 1919, the first being Claude Debussy's Violin Sonata in G minor, followed chronologically by Ottorino Respighi's Violin Sonata in B minor and Edward Elgar's Violin Sonata in E minor. These works, along with the Berceuse of Jean Sibelius, which dates from the same period, were composed in the midst of World War I and its grim aftermath, yet there is little in these pieces to show the trauma of that war and the hardships it brought. Indeed, they resist categorization as "war sonatas," and instead reflect the late Romanticism of the belle époque, rather than the modernism of the same time period. Because these works share lush harmonies, gentle moods, and more or less conventional tonality, they are accessible to listeners today who crave a traditional approach in their chamber music. Even so, these pieces have fallen into relative obscurity, notwithstanding their obvious appeal, so Ehnes and Armstrong have performed a valuable service by making them available on this album. Their performances are highly expressive and tinged with melancholy and nostalgia, which are appropriate for the style, though there isn't a trace of sentimentality. Onyx provides clear and roomy sound, and the recording captures every note, even in the softest passages. © TiVo
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Classical - Released April 27, 2018 | Warner Classics

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