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Cello Sonatas / Adagio & Waltz Hybrid SACD - DSD, Import


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Audio CD, Hybrid SACD - DSD, Import, May 11, 2010
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (May 11, 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Hybrid SACD - DSD, Import
  • Label: Praga Czech Rep.
  • ASIN: B0031Q8W14
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #904,426 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Sonata for cello & piano in D minor, Op. 40: 1. Allegro non troppo
2. Sonata for cello & piano in D minor, Op. 40: 2. Allegro.
3. Sonata for cello & piano in D minor, Op. 40: 3. Largo
4. Sonata for cello & piano in D minor, Op. 40: 4. Allegro
5. Ballet Suite No. 2, for orchestra (assembled by Atovmyan): 1. Adagio
6. Ballet Suite No. 2, for orchestra (assembled by Atovmyan): 2. Spring Waltz
7. Sonata for viola & piano in C major, Op. 147: 1. Moderato (Novella)
8. Sonata for viola & piano in C major, Op. 147: 2. Allegretto
9. Sonata for viola & piano in C major, Op. 147: 3. Adagio

Editorial Reviews

Hybrid-SACD pressing.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. S. Bower on September 27, 2010
A fine and well-designed chamber release.

This is great music, well played and recorded. So, why no five stars all-round? Well, as you probably know by now, I am not in favour of over-marking, and I reserve 5 stars for the genuinely outstanding releases that rock my world. This does not quite reach that exalted level.

Shostakovich wrote some of the greatest and most accessible chamber music of the 20th (or any other!) century. This intriguing programme juxtaposes his early Op 40 cello sonata with the later, darker Op 147.

The Op 40 dates from before the Zhdanov debacles, and before Shostakovich started using chamber music - and particularly his great quartets - for his darker and more profound utterances, which he felt could not be made safely in his more public works. It is a relatively tuneful, positive and accessible piece, although not without its shadows.

The Op 147, his very last completed work, is altogether stronger meat. Transposed here for the cello - and eminently successfully - it is characteristically deeper, darker and more enigmatic. Staring into the abyss, Shostakovich quotes in the last movement (as he does in the his final 15th Symphony) from other composers -such as Beethoven and Wagner - as well as from his earlier works.

Both pieces are finely and sensitively played here.

Characteristic of the Pragas I have heard, the recordings seem to have been made a bit up-front, albeit in a large-ish hall with ample reverb. The result is natural, but a tad unfocussed to my ears. The resulting over-large instruments represent the weakest feature of the recording, although I would not want to make too much of this.

Strongly recommended if the repertoire appeals. But if you have not yet become acquainted with Shostakovich's chamber and instrumental works, then you really should be; without this, you really do not have a complete picture of the man and his music.
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