Martha Argerich's live 1982 Rachmaninov Third Concerto was one of the tape underground's hottest properties before Philips officially issued it in 1995. The sound on this newly remastered edition is brighter and more defined, with clearer timpani and low strings, but the essential timbre has not changed. This is febrile, edge-of-your-seat, tightrope-walking piano playing: swashbuckling, spontaneous, and soulful. You never know what Argerich is going to do from one moment to the next, but damned if Chailly doesn't anticipate his soloist's every whim, and then some. If you're not left limp with awe at the end, you haven't been listening! Argerich plays the lighter-textured, technically easier, andRead more musically superior first movement cadenza, as the composer himself did.
I've never really warmed to the Argerich/Freire Rachmaninov Second Suite, recorded in 1982. It sounds better here than in previous CD incarnations, yet the sonics remain glassy, cavernous, and glaring, as many early digital productions tended to be. As a result, much of the pair's overly fast playing whizzes by like blurred, run-on paragraphs, most hurtfully so in the Waltz. Likewise, the Alla Marcia is breathless and unyielding, although the Tarantella Finale manages to dance with cohesion despite the breakneck speed. On the other hand, I prefer the unforced singing line and greater continuity of the Andantino to Argeich's remake with Alexandre Rabinowitch for Teldec. But it's the concerto that counts, and my rating solely reflects its artistic and sonic merits.
--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com Read less
Works on This Recording
Concerto for Piano no 3 in D minor, Op. 30by Sergei Rachmaninov
Martha Argerich (Piano)
Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra
Period: Romantic Written: 1909; Russia
Suite for 2 Pianos no 2, Op. 17by Sergei Rachmaninov
Nelson Freire (Piano),
Martha Argerich (Piano)
Period: Romantic Written: 1900-1901; Russia
Average Customer Review: ( 1 Customer Review )
A MOMENT FOR THE AGESOctober 10, 2012By GARY WHITING (COBBLE HILL, BC)See All My Reviews"Martha Argerich's intensely overpowering live Rachmaninoff commands the senses. A performance so penetrating that one knows and feels the clever and insightful spirit exploding on the keyboard has become part of the music she was to represent. The immediate adulation, praise and excited appreciative response from the audience is extraordinary and a clear statement that they understood as the dynamic execution betrayed a revelation for the ages. Truly irresistible."Report Abuse