17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
One of the greatest young pianists of his generation,
This review is from: Domenico Scarlatti: 18 Sonatas (Audio CD)
After his superlative recordings of Rameau, Couperin and Bach it was, perhaps, entirely logical for Alexandre Tharaud to turn his attention to their contemporary, Scarlatti. This is especially the case as Scarlatti's music, perhaps, is most suited to playing on the modern piano.
The present recording certainly does not disappoint. Tharaud's playing is clear, beautifully modulated with a wonderful chiaroscuro and interplay of foreground and background. The melancholy side of Scarlatti is deeply moving, while the virtuosic music is scintillating and there is real resonance and depth in appropriate passages that makes some sonatas quite exciting. Everything is beautifully phrased and finely judged. Just listen - in Sonata K72 - for instance to the way in which a phrase is made to suddenly leap out of the texture in the right hand, followed by a complementary pharase in the left hand bass contrasting with the even balance between in the two-part harmony up to this point. Note how the 'crushing' harmonies - in K29 - with their abundance of appogiaturas and suspensions convey both pathos and forward drive; the dynamics finely varied each time this particular passage re-occurs.
If you want one recording of a selection of Scarlatti sonatas, I would heartily recommend this one. Then go and buy Alexandre Tharaud's recordings of Couperin and Rameau too and prepare to be bowled over!Like looking in to Chapman's Homer!