This disc, very well recorded in 2006, forms one of two discs of the Mozart piano trios performed by the Florestan Trio. This very talented group has a considerable following now, and I include myself as one of their admirers, because they bring a natural musicality to everything they play in addition to the apparent sheer joy of their shared music making.
This disc is typical of their work. Mozart is not always as easy as it seems and can sound laboured in the wrong hands. Not so here. The music, ideal salon music and perfect for more intimate home entertainment, follows its essentially lyrical progression with very much a musical smile on its face. The few moments of limited musical drama, as in the minor key sections, are not overplayed and the pervading sense of general bonhomie is left undisturbed.
Two of these three trios are firmly placed within the works of Mozart's maturity (K496 and K548). They were conceived as vehicles for his own piano playing but also at a time when Mozart was extending the violin and cello parts into more independent roles within the compositions. This is in contrast to the earlier times, as can be observed in Haydn's trios, when those two instruments were seen, and described, as accompanists to the keyboard which would not have been a piano, but more likely a harpsichord. Those earlier characteristics can also be observed in the Divertimento (K254) performed here and which can also be described as the first piano trio (although more likely played on a different keyboard instrument). All three works give considerable satisfaction in these excellent performances.
So, for those who are attracted to this program of early and mature piano trios, I would suggest that this disc warrants serious consideration. It also makes an excellent companion disc for the other disc already available.