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4.5 out of 5 stars52
4.5 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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on 20 March 2013
I was introduced to Satie's piano music by my wife, who played me a scratched LP by Ciccolini when we were first going out in the late seventies. I had never heard music like it. A series of short piano pieces, some poignant, some witty, all deceptively simple but difficult to tire of. It was very different to the reggae that made up most of my listening at that time, and helped me re-assess what I valued and enjoyed in music. When our turntable was so worn it had to go to the great disco in the sky, I looked for a CD to replace the now very battered LP. I bought "The Magic of Satie" by Jean-Yves Thibaudet first. I liked his playing, but it didn't contain some of my favourite tracks, but had instead a number of lesser-known Satie compositions which I didn't think worked as well as his more famous ones. Now I've bought this CD to supplement it. The selection of tracks is excellent for someone who has no ambition to become a Satie expert, but who enjoys his unique style of composition. I feel the piano playing isn't quite as good as Ciccolini's, but maybe that's just nostalgia. Of the tracks common to this and the Thibaudet album I generally prefer Thibaudet's, but I don't know enough about piano playing to analyse why. What I would say is for the price of a couple of coffees you can buy 70 minutes of wonderful music, more than adequately played, which you will be enjoying for decades to come.
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on 7 September 2012
Queffelec is a wonderful player, and the sound quality is outstanding. But Queffelec interprets Satie's music as though he were a Romantic composer. Very awkward and jarring to listen to, an unwelcome imposition. Melodramatic and heavy handed without the surreal pathos and whimsical humor. Stick with de Leeuwen's stunning slow and graceful performances or Ciccolini's insightful and sympathetic renditions.
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on 20 October 2012
This is an excellant CD - it is all his best known pieces and a few more obscure ones all together,at times jarring, but it is Satie at his haunting best.
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on 13 September 2011
This CD is one of those 'no-brainers'. If chancing £[] is an unconscionable gamble for you, then don't. In all other cases, order this zany helping of Satie now.
The notes don't usually follow the sequence you'd expect, after a sound grounding in Bach and Mozart; some of the notes are not even the ones you'd have chosen at all. But these zany pieces grab your attention with a witty innocence - not a bit like the discordancy of the Second Viennese School or anything offensive like that! It's a bit like hearing someone say something a bit ungrammatical or using an unexpected word, but still managing to convey a precise meaning. It likely makes you think 'I wish I'd said that'. I'd go as far as to say Satie is a sort of Dylan Thomas in music.
Anyway you've probably heard lots of these pieces many times before, and maybe not been sure what they were. But there's one very conventional piece towards the end of the CD that may surprise you - I was stunned to find it was by Satie. In fact, I even Googled it to make sure the record producers hadn't made a mistake. I've played that one track dozens of times in the car since, simply because it's so delightfully Lehár!
You can't make an intellectual assessment of these thirty odd pieces, at least I can't. You just accept them for what they are, mainly chirpy and eccentric. They're even written down largely without key or time signatures. How do you assess what he means when he defines a piece of music 'pear-shaped'? But somehow, it is. Some of the pieces, on the other hand, are almost disturbingly profound and thought-provoking. I keep thinking about how this gifted man died in utter destitution. A great loss to phonometrography.
Delightful music, delightfully played. You certainly won't get bored, if only because each piece is too short for that. It's great to be able to listen to all the Gnossiennes and Gymnopédies together, not simply relying on Classic fm to include the odd one occasionally in their play-list.
Excellent music for value - you probably guessed exactly what I meant, even though I used the wrong words somewhat in the wrong order!
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on 27 April 2016
When I was age 2 (yes 2 year old!) and upwards I would go rifling through my brother's LPs.
I used to sit with the headphones on next to the record player and the headphones were so huge I had to hold them to my ears. My brother is 8 years older than me so by letting me listen to his albums I found many favourites which I would likely have otherwise missed out on.
*disclaimer - he taught me from the very first time how to hold vinyl without damaging it but when I was tiny I needed his help as my hands were way to small to hold a 33 & a 3rd*
I started out with The Beatles, moving on to Peter Gabriel, Brian Eno, Elvis Costello,..all of whom I still love to this day (well, except The Beatles!).
One day when I was around 13 back in the early 80's I picked up a blue album with a picture of a grand piano on it from my big brother's collection and it blew me away!
I loved every moment of it!

By the time I was doing my exams Satie and Ambient 2 by Eno were the only music I played whilst revising.

Recently my work has got busier and I will listen to talk radio to cut out the chatter about diets and TOWIE out wich oe on around me but sometimes it's just too much when I really need to concentrate.

This CD arrived today - perfect timing as I had some complicated tasks to work on.
I took out the Ed Sheeran I was listening to as it was distracting (much as I like his CD too - OK forgive me for that but the video for Thinking Out Loud is stunning as is the track).
Mr Satie made me calm, level and able to concentrate today. Thank you Monsieur! Your work is just beautiful!

My only issue now is that I need another copy for home when I have my candles going and I read my kindle with all the lights off...

If you like calming piano music this is simply superb! And this comment is coming from someone who is also a fan of American Punk too! Lol!

I loved the other comment on here which said 'All the right notes, not necessarily in the right order' - as per Andre Previn & Morcambe & Wise - loved that comment, loved that show, love this CD!
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VINE VOICEon 22 June 2011
Most people will probably not have heard of Erik Satie, but I can virtually guarantee that most people have heard a number of his more popular pieces. This is dreamy piano music, that makes you think of lost bittersweet days, and lonely beaches, and places that might just be dreams and on the edge of consciousness. Listening to this cd I am transported to gently melancholic places, where time stands still, or goes a little slower anyway, and the afternoon drifts off into haze.

Its a great cd to listen to, especially if you are writing something on your computer, as I often am. All in all, I highly recommend this cd if you like (mostly) gentle and melodic piano pieces, and if you like Claude Debussy, as they are not dissimilar to be honest. On the strength of this cd I am certainly going to purchase more of Satie's works.
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on 27 December 2013
I bought this as a gift and it was well received. the music is beautiful, so simple but with so much meaning and inspiration for reflection.
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on 17 August 2013
This was music which I thought I had already but when searchng for it on the shelf found it missing. I think maybe I had it on tape, most of which I have disposed of. I was pleased to be able to listen again to this piece which I have always enjoyed. Obviously haven't chosen to listen for some time but was nudged into looking for it by programmes on radio about Satie - all of which I enjoyed and found thought provoking. A good addition to my CD collection and a good performance.
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on 4 December 2013
Yes I would recommend this recording, it is one of the better ones. The selection of works makes for very enjoyable listening.
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on 27 February 2015
A truly wonderful CD. My family love Satie. Very relaxing and soothing. We often listen to it in the car and the atmosphere is very often one of calm and peace. So wonderfully heady and good for the soul, it puts my young children to sleep sometimes and can make the school run a time of reflection and inner peace. Incredibly serene and remarkably beautiful. Definitely one to buy if you love the works of Satie.
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