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Beethoven: Hammerklavier, Moonlight, Pathetique Sonatas

4.5 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 31, 1994
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major Op. 106: I. Allegro
  2. Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major Op. 106: II. Scherzo: Assai vivace
  3. Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major Op. 106: III Adagio e sostenuto
  4. Piano Sonata No. 29 in B-flat Major Op. 106: IV Largo; Fugue (Allegro Risoluto)
  5. Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor Op. 13: I. Grave-Allegro di molto e con brio
  6. Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor Op. 13: II Adagio cantabile
  7. Piano Sonata No. 8 in C minor Op. 13: III Rondo - Allegro
  8. Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp minor Op. 27, No. 2: I Adagio sostenuto
  9. Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp minor Op. 27, No. 2: II Allegretto And Trio
  10. Piano Sonata No. 14 in C-sharp minor Op. 27, No. 2: III Presto agitato


Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 31, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Chesky Records
  • ASIN: B000003GE9
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #450,835 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Bravo Wild, Bravo Chesky!
Obviously this CD contains 3 greatest Beethoven's Sonatas, but what makes it so special is the virtuosity of Earl Wild that comes together with Chesky's highest level of audiophile recodring technique.
I have few No. 8,14,29 from other great pianists like Pollini, Kempff, Brendel and even Horowitz, IMHO Wild performance is unique and really up to top. He might not be as famous as others but it is just because he can't accept the recording quantity of major labels.
With this CD, the super natural recorded sound can ride you thru extreme aspects of the piano & I have feeling like having Wild at home to play my favourite music just for me.
If Chesky has a lot of money to spend on advertising as EMI, DG or Sony this CD might become a hottest sale already. You can't go wrong with this CD, especially if you have a good sound system.
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Bravo Wild, Bravo Chesky!
Obviously this CD contains 3 greatest Beethoven's Sonatas, but what makes it so special is the virtuosity of Earl Wild that comes together with Chesky's highest level of audiophile recodring technique.
I have a few No. 8,14,29 from other great pianists like Pollini, Kempff, Brendel and even Horowitz, IMHO Wild performance is unique and really up to top. He might not be as famous as the others but it is just because he can't accept the recording quality of major labels.
With this CD, the super natural recorded sound can ride you thru extreme aspects of the piano & I have feeling like having Wild at home to play my favourite music just for me.
If Chesky has a lot of money to spend on advertising as EMI, DG or Sony this CD might become a hottest sale already. You can't go wrong with this CD, especially if you have a good sound system.
Comment 1 of 1 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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These performances of Beethoven sonatas are sensitive, heart-felt, beautifully played & can hold their own with any other recordings I know (& Beethoven's piano music is what I listen to most...).
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Earl Wild always chose tempos that are significantly faster, and as here often a lot faster, than most others. It results in a tension certainly, but a tension that often leaves listener wondering exactly when he will lose control. Of course, he doesn't - the notes are almost always there - but the loss in rhythmic clarity and the inability to look for the "inner lines" of the music are quite apparent. In the Pathetique, as just one example. As the right hand crosses over the left in the second subject of the first movement (marked Allegro di Molto... by Betthoven, but that is not Presto Possible...), you notice a "hitch" in the tempo for the most awkward one, that just shouldn't be there. The Fugue of the great Hammerklavier is quite a mess of muddled lines.

A technical problem. The piano technician did not prepare the action of this piano well at all. It is noisy, especially the pedal action. Unfortunately, just another solo piano recording spoilt by careless instrument preparation.

There are other recordings I would recommend. Ashkenazy, Serkin, and Alfred Brendel for the late sonatas (his 1960's Vox recording of the Hammerklavier is still the reading for me), would provide more definitive readings. A recent set by Richard Goode is also reasonable - very different from Brendel. The Garrick Ohlssohn recordings (8 CDs but not yet the complete cycle) I have just started to listen to, and are very impressive. The Andras Schiff set are mostly fine, except for the occasional blemish. Unfortunately, an extreme example is the super-fast tempo of the first movement of the Moolight Sonata.
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