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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply brilliant, 1 Oct 2011
This review is from: Chopin: Ballades; Scherzos (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 45) (Audio CD)
Rubinstein plays these Ballades with effortless straightforwardness. His interpretation of Chopin is uncomplicated and absent of any of the excessive emotion you often hear elsewhere. I think it is authentic, genuine and I like it very much.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hallmark Chopin Recording, 15 Nov 2008
By 
Scriabinmahler (UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Chopin: Ballades; Scherzos (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 45) (Audio CD)
Rubinstein's hallmark recording of Chopin's Ballards & Scherzos still sounds wonderfully rich and it has timeless quality to inspire both the music and other pianists.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This is the real thing and possibly Rubinstein's best, 16 Feb 2013
By 
I. Giles (Argyll, Scotland) - See all my reviews
(HALL OF FAME REVIEWER)    (TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Chopin: Ballades; Scherzos (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 45) (Audio CD)
These remastered recordings dating from the late 1950's are a considerable improvement over the previous issues. Gone is the rather wooden sound of the original and early re-masterings heard throughout the range and which compromised musical enjoyment somewhat. The most one could complain about now is the slightly 'clattery' sound towards the top of the piano range. The middle and bass ranges especially are much improved. Nevertheless, the minor proviso concerning the top treble does nothing to diminish Rubinstein's achievement in these pieces.

Right from the start the performances are simply gripping and just sound 'right.' What one notices here is the sheer power and bravura of Rubinstein's playing coupled with extraordinary clarity of finger-work. Although the faster tempi are definitely fast, this never exceeds the delivery of clarity so all of the counter-ideas within the music make their full effect.

Not all is fast and furious of course. The quieter moments, of which there are many, have a timeless quality where Rubinstein's sensitivity allows the music to flow so naturally that time seems to stand still.

As one who has really completed his collection of CDs and whose new purchases tend more to DVDs and Blu-rays of similar musical content, I am going to do that very rare thing for me these days - purchase the latest issue of a disc that is already good. The latest version is the SACD remastering which may even solve that slightly 'clattery' treble sound. That is the only improvement that I can imagine for this disc and other reviews of that version do seem to be encouraging. In the meantime this remains an outstanding set of performances in its much improved remastered sound.

I would suggest that, regardless of how many other performances are owned of these works, Rubinstein's still demand a place in any collection. I have supplied a separate review of the clearly superior SACD version, sadly in short supply now.

Further Note: The 10 disc box set published in 2010 with 24 bit remastering of the whole collection offers a significant improvement on sound in every way on all discs (except the SACD version of the ballades and scherzi). This can be confidently stated as I own both and have been able to do an A/B comparison. That box set must now be the best possible purchase.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellant Chopin, 13 Sep 2013
By 
M. N. Hart "MH" (Britain) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Chopin: Ballades; Scherzos (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 45) (Audio CD)
The recording is superb, both from a quality and a performance point of view. It Has nearly completed my Chopin, Rubenstein Collection,
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4.0 out of 5 stars Great Chopin Recordings : A crowded field, 11 Dec 2013
By 
Mr. Keith M. Gibbard "thatbloke" (Manchester UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Chopin: Ballades; Scherzos (Artur Rubinstein Collection, Vol 45) (Audio CD)
For me, Rubinstein plays it straight. Neither too austere nor too sentimental and this cd is a welcome addition to my collection.
The recording is from the late 1950's/early 60's so lacks the vibrancy of some later interpretations. In a crowded field, anyone coming to the magnificent Ballades for the first time should also consider the recordings by Krystian Zimerman and Evgeny KIssin before choosing Rubinstein's version.
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