in B, Op.8
in C, Op.87
in C minor, Op.101
Nicholas Angelich (piano), Renaud Capuçon (violin) & Gautier Capuçon (cello)
Recorded December 2003 in Chambéry, Auditorium de la Cité des Arts
CD No: VIRGIN CLASSICS 5456532 (2 CDs) Duration: 9031 Reviewed: May 2004
Brahmss Piano Trios Angelich and the Capuçons
Reviewed by Colin Anderson
These are invigorating and sensitive accounts of Brahmss generously expressed piano trios. Beautifully recorded too, with a tangibility and immediacy that is ideal for chamber music; although in fortissimos the closeness can be slightly wearing.
However, given these two CDs are selling for the price of one, then this new issue is a tempting addition to the collection. One thing these players do not leave any doubt over is Brahmss passion and warmth; its not mawkishly presented though, for these excellent, strong-on-teamwork musicians have an overall view of Brahmss structures that is satisfying, a whole view that is lovingly arrived at. It would be a hard heart indeed that didnt respond to the ardour expressed in the first movement of the B major trio.
Throughout these performances, not only are the formal aspects of each movement attended to, but the music glows with an expressive intensity that is not allowed to dominate; dynamic and emotional contrasts sustain each movement in a most favourable way. Occasionally, there is a doubt as to how much pathos these works will yield, but these musicians just keep on the right side of overdoing it.
The C minor trio, the first movement containing one of Brahmss most spontaneously moving ideas, is superbly done and comes close to Deccas Katchen, Suk and Starker recording. High praise! All in all, a fine set of colourful and engaging renditions that will find a home with other distinguished versions of this wonderful music. Im left feeling that anyone who might think Brahmss chamber music is a little dour, might be converted by these enthusiastic, often burnished realisations.