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on 25 April 2006
Well, Regis have impressed me again with this very low priced set with Shostakovich's 24 preludes and fugues, ranging from the damn right preposterously difficult prelude 15 to the more relaxed first. I think the success of this recording, of Tatiana's performance, lies in the fact that she befriended Shostakovich, our hero, in 1950 after hearing her play some wonderful Bach in Leipzig. Shostakovich, so wowed by her performance wrote these pieces for her, which shows with the precise sticking to the score with her inimate knowledge of how the preludes stick together to the fugues, she pulls this off wonderfully. It's amazing to think that she died playing this in 1993 at a public performance, something to ever immortalise Nikolayeva with these pieces.

I have absolutely no problem with the set whatsoever, the provided notes make a good five minute's reading about background and a brief synopsis of each track. The sound quality is perfect on each disc.

All in all this is money well spent and is a perfect addition to any music lover's collection, did I mention that this is the best recording of the preludes and fugues about?
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on 16 December 2017
Don't know why I ordered it not my cup of tea
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on 14 August 2011
Unfortunately there's no widely available recording of the Preludes and Fugues with Nikolayeva at the height of her powers (there's a notoriously hard to find recording from the 60s in really poor sound, but that's another story...), so we have to make do with this 1987 cycle and the Hyperion 1990. They're pretty similar, apart from the acoustics - dry and harsh here, the exact opposite on Hyperion. Neither is ideal, and nor is Nikolayeva's playing: her technique is past its best, and that shows in some of the faster numbers. Other pieces are so slow they almost grind to a halt. Yet there's no denying the authority of her playing and the cumulative impact of the cycle.

In an ideal world, there would be a complete recording by Sviatoslav Richter, or a Nikolayeva from the 60s and 70s in good sound. As it is, the most consistently satisfying recording is by Konstantin Scherbakov on Naxos.
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on 23 January 2014
For the money, you can't beat these recordings, played by somebody who should know. Although these were recorded when the pianist was not at her prime they still represent excellent value for money.
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