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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engaging Rameau on the modern piano, 21 Feb. 2002
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It is now almost fashionable to play baroque keyboard music on the piano, with the likes of Schiff, Perahia, Pletnev and Hewitt turning their hand to Bach and Scarlatti. But Rameau? Not since Marcelle Meyer's celebrated and brilliant recordings of the 1940s and 1950s has a pianist of note attempted Rameau's keyboard music on a modern concert grand. Like Meyer, Alexandre Tharaud's new recording explodes the myth that Rameau's keyboard writing is just too idiomatic to the harpsichord to be played on the piano. And how! Tharaud proves himself to be a consummate stylist, aware of period performance practice on the one hand yet willing to exploit the resources of the modern grand on the other. Only very rarely does his playing lapse into a the detached pseudo-authenticity of a piano imitating a harpsichord. His lines are for the most part fluent and elegant, and Tharaud realises Rameau's pieces with a wonderful sense of character and colour. Take, for example his wonderful rendition of 'La poule' in which one can almost hear the clucking of a hen. Tharaud does not eclipse Meyer's more fluid recordings (currently available on the Historic Performance Label), but there can be no doubting that this is an important and engaging issue that is guarateed to give great pleasure. Congratulations to Harmonia Mundi for having the courage to issue a Rameau piano disc.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars bringing out some lovely sonorities like peals of bells from beyond the stars, 18 Jan. 2015
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This CD is my first introduction to Rameau's music, and I am thrilled by it. Nor am I familiar with this pianist, but no worries there as he gives lovely, sensitive performances of the two suites. His playing has precision and poetry, bringing out some lovely sonorities like peals of bells from beyond the stars. The reason I give four stars instead of five is because I later listened to Stephen Gutman's traversal of the same suites and found some greater advantages in interpretation. For example, Gutman takes the opening movement in the Suite in A more slowly than Tharaud and enables us to hear it as a musical journey, allowing greater emotional weight as the piece develops. Thus seven short minutes of music - one of the highlights in keyboard literature - are given space to achieve their haunting effect. My advice is to buy Tharaud for lovely 'liquid' pianism; but DO NOT FAIL to also buy Stephen Gutman's three disc survey of all Rameau's keyboard works on piano.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hasn't left my CD player in weeks - wonderful., 12 July 2014
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J. Baldwin "Reader" (Dundee, Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This was recommended on Radio 3's Building a Library for those who wanted to sample Rameau's keyboard music but couldn't face a whole CD of harpsichord.

I decided to give it a go and, let me tell you, this is my CD of the year so far (it was actually released a while ago so I'm catching up!).

It didn't leave my CD player for about a fortnight and I found myself at the end of the day turning the lights out and putting this on.

It is beautifully played with some inventive decorations, and wonderfully recorded. The only reason I took it out of the player was because of the backlog of new purchases building up - but it's in iTunes and on my phone for train and bus journeys.

I think this CD may be out of the catalogue so good luck tracking it down - it's well worth it.
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Rameau: "Nouvelles suites"
Rameau: "Nouvelles suites" by Alexandre Tharaud
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