Truls Mork: Britten --Cello Suites 1-3 (Virgin) (5*)
I bought this record because I've admired Truls Mork's cello playing, because I love the Bach unaccompanied cello sonatas, because I've heard little of Britten's music (although I did once almost freeze to death during a late-season performance of Britten's opera, A Midsummer Night's Dream, in the unheated Glimmerglass Opera House in Cooperstown, NY), and because the reviews on Amazon praised it highly.
They were right to praise it. It's exquisite music and Truls Mork is the right person to play it. His cello sound is deep and sonorous, appropriate for music as complex and evocative as this. The movements of the three suites, which were composed as unaccompanied cello suites with Britten's good colleague, Mstislav Rostropovich, in mind, vary in tempo, approach and mood, and they permit Mork to show off his considerable technique, which he does without loss of musical content.
At the same time as I bought this album, I bought the half-jazz, half-not-jazz album, Round About Weill (ECM), with Gianluigi Trovesi on clarinets and Gianni Coscia on Accordion. I then loaded both albums onto iTunes on my computer and interspersed them, first one tune from the one album, then one tune from the other, until all were in place in my music file. They fit amazingly well. To start with, both are superb albums by consummate musicians at the peak of their creative powers. More than that, though, they match in musicality and in evoking a mood, which is usually but not always melancholic.
Try it., Buy them both, not just one of them. But no matter what, if you want to listen to quality cello music performed by a superior artist, you'll relish this album by Truls Mork.