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French Piano Trios, Vol. 1
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French Piano Trios, Vol. 1

21 Feb. 1995 | Format: MP3

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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 21 Feb. 1995
  • Label: Naxos
  • Copyright: (C) 1995 Naxos
  • Total Length: 56:51
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001LZYB9Y
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hercules M. Du Preez on 3 Feb. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
A sensitive rendering of these three trios. I purchased the recording after hearing a performance of the Debussy in Cape Town. Exquisite; and the Joachim Trio do full justice to the ethereal work.

The Ravel and the Schmitt were subtly performed, although the latter was unfamiliar to me.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Super Ravel 30 Sept. 2012
By Bahij Bawarshi - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Maurice Ravel once wrote that his objective was technical perfection. "I can strive unceasingly to this end, since I am certain of never being able to attain it. The important thing is to get nearer to it all the time." (Cited in Melvin Berger's Guide to Chamber Music.) Ravel got very near to technical perfection in his Piano Trio, a major work that can stand alongside the best piano trios in the standard repertoire. It has been performed and recorded many times by various chamber music ensembles. When I came across this recording by the Joachim Trio at a local store, I picked it up without a second thought, having for several years enjoyed this group's wonderful performance of the Saint-SaŽns Piano Trios 1 & 2.

That the Joachim Trio keeps up with the immense technical and virtuosic demands of the music to produce the complicated textures, harmonies and colors that Ravel was striving for, and still deliver a free-flowing performance, is tribute to the players' abilities individually and in ensemble. Each of the three soloists is well known, especially in British circles. In addition to this and the Saint-SaŽns discs, the group has also recorded for Naxos the four Dvorak piano trios (in two volumes) and piano trios of Smetana, Suk and Novak (one volume), that I have not yet heard.

From the intriguing Basque rhythms that dominate the first movement, to the brilliant colors of the following scherzo, the deep passacaglia third movement with its intense middle section, and the finale's dramatic fluctuation between gentle music and huge, almost orchestral sound, Ravel's Piano Trio is commanding. And if my experience is any indication, the more one listens to it the more impressive it gets. It is arguably Ravel's greatest chamber music composition; though late in life he expressed a preference for the spontaneity of his String Quartet to the technical perfection of this work.

The Debussy Piano Trio is a pleasing composition in all its four movements, written when the composer was not yet 20. Understandably, what you get is not the music of later Debussy, master of French 'impressionism.' Schmitt's brief piece is also attractive, but its 3 minutes are not enough to make a lasting impression. Here I have to comment that Naxos could have been generous and offered more music than the disc's 57 minutes playing time; yet from another perspective, one would still buy the recording for the half hour of super Ravel only.
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