The Borodin Trio (Rostislav Dubinsky, violin, Luba Edlina, piano, and Yuli Turovsky, cello) join forces with guest Mimi Zweig, violin, and Jerry Horner, viola in performing the demanding but intoxicatingly beautiful Piano Quintet in G minor, Opus 57 and as a trio the Piano Trio in E minor, Opus 67. Both works are from the 1940s (Quintet 1940, Trio 1944), the war years in Europe and the world. Yet despite the references to angst in the works they both abound in some light passages that could very well be tongue in cheek, being works form a composer who never quite aligned with his native country's choices of governance.
The Quintet opens with a spacious, plangent Lento (echoed later in the 4th movement Lento) but in the second movements it prances to the tune we all know as 'New York, New York, a Wonderful Town!' and one wonders the derivation... The Quintet is performed in this 1983 recording with such precision and lush tone that a finer recording just cannot be imagined.
Much the same can be said for the Trio in E Minor that allows the Borodin Trio to demonstrate what perfection of communication among its members they have. Here, too, are themes that have gone on to become mysterious echoes form Shostakovich's other works. This recording has withstood the time test and for those who appreciate the many aspects of Shostakovich's musical genius and tortured mind, this recording is a must for the library. Highly Recommended. Grady Harp, January 07