This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
Notes and Editorial Reviews
1991 performance of the Liszt B-A-C-H was the 1870 revision, for over a century regarded as the definitive version of the work. In fact there are two organ versions and two piano versions of this piece: Trotter's new recording is of the 1855 original version for organ played on the instrument much admired by Liszt where it was first heard, coupled with the Adnos which was also premiered there.
Anyone who is familiar with the 1870 revision of the Prelude and Fugue on the name B-A-C-H is in for some surprises—pedal cadenzas at 050" and 240' followed by a longer maestoso section (weaker) leading to the fugue (indistinct here
in the low register opening). Cuts made for the 1870 revision around 657" surely improved it. Having known the 1870 revision for over 40 years, I find the 1855 one merely interesting, but both better than the two piano versions where that instrument is hard pressed to imitate the organ. As with his earlier performance, Trotter is a compelling advocate and the organ of the Dom Merseburg is authentic right down to the clatter from the mechanical action and some wobble in the wind supply as the instrument copes with Liszt's piano writing at 842".
The Adnos is the big test and here Trotter is consistently reliable, and musical, with a fine sense of timbre, even if he slightly lacks flair. I find that breaking the flow in the fugue (at 330", 453" and 6'34") holds up what one has come to regard as the work's final ineluctable sweep. But Trotter as usual has absolutely no technical problems and he (and the engineers) make the Dom Merseburg organ sound truly magnificent. No wonder Liszt was impressed!
-- Gramophone [10/1994]
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