26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Liszt at his most personal,
This review is from: Liszt: Piano Works - Les Années de Pèlerinage: Italie (excerpts) / Deux Légendes (DG The Originals) (Audio CD)
It is good to be able to welcome the return of these incomparable performances back to the catalogue. When the original LP was first issued, the Gramophone reviewer commented that, while he had long admired Liszt, he had never before actually loved him until he heard this recording. Indeed, anyone who is suspicious of Liszt should hear it, and will hopefully undergo a similar 'conversion'. This is I think the most desirable single Liszt CD ever, played with Kempff's customary humanity, fluency and insight.
While one might regret the absence of the Dante Sonata, the only piece from the Second Book of the Annees de Pelerinage not included here, the first three pieces [starting with an incomparable Sposalizio] and the three Petrarch Sonetti are complemented by the ravishing Gondeliera from Venezia e Napoli, and the Deux Legendes - St. Francis of Assisi preaching to the Birds, and St. Francis of Paola walking on the Water. Here again, Kempff turns pieces that are sometimes presented as vehicles for flashy display into warmly human and musical experiences. By no account to be missed by anyone who cares for great piano music and great playing.