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Albeniz: Iberia, Espana / Daniel Barenboim

Albeniz / Barenboim,Daniel
Release Date: 04/30/2013 
Label:  Apex   Catalog #: 51785  
Composer:  Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim
Number of Discs: 1 
Length: 1 Hours 2 Mins. 

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Notes and Editorial Reviews

Over the years recordings of Albeniz’s Iberia have always tended to rest under the shadow of Alicia de Larrocha. But Barenboim is totally his own man, a pianist on top form who knows just how to lift Spanish dance rhythms and conjure up glittering orchestral colours from the keyboard.

He opens the ‘Evocacion’ gently and rapturously, first bringing out the piano’s warm middle register, and then reaching up luminously to the upper range with equally magical tonal nuance and a completely free, languorous rubato. The coda is delectably gentle. The contrasting ‘El Puerto’ is brilliantly animated, the articulation sharpened, and again the music ebbs and flows with complete naturalness. Clean, quirky articulation for the opening of
Read more ‘Fete-Dieu a Seville’, leading to a big, thrillingly splashy climax.

The three pieces from Book 2 are similarly characterful, with the cross-rhythms of ‘Rondena’ bold without being hammered. ‘Almeria’ is sultry, full of atmosphere, yet refreshingly alive and unmannered. Again, the flexing of tempo and changes of mood are seemingly spontaneous, with lovely dynamic shading: the rapturous closing section is beautifully played. The dainty opening of ‘Triana’ and the passionate middle-register melody which follows are utterly pianistic, yet again there are orchestral flashes of colour to illuminate the textures.

The six pieces which make up Op 165 are slighter, but Barenboim plays them with enormous character and charm, never for a moment suggesting they are trivial. The famous lilting ‘Tango’, the recitative-like ‘Malaguena’ which becomes steadily more ardent, the delectably lighthearted ‘Serenata’ all show Barenboim’s pianistic skills at their most imaginatively diverse, and he creates a delectably tender mood for the ‘Capricho catalan’. The piano recording is close but faithful, and this is superbly unselfconscious music-making, totally idiomatic and communicative, which gives great pleasure.

-- Gramophone [8/2001]
[Review of the original full-priced release] Read less

Works on This Recording

1. Hojas de album (6), Op. 165 "España" by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1890; London, England 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 17 Minutes 30 Secs. 
2. Suite Iberia, Book 1: no 1, Evocación by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1904-1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 6 Minutes 15 Secs. 
3. Suite Iberia, Book 1: no 2, El puerto by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1904-1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 4 Minutes 23 Secs. 
4. Suite Iberia, Book 1: no 3, El Corpus en Sevilla by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 9 Minutes 11 Secs. 
5. Suite Iberia, Book 2: no 1, Rondeña by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 7 Minutes 40 Secs. 
6. Suite Iberia, Book 2: no 2, Almería by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 11 Minutes 4 Secs. 
7. Suite Iberia, Book 2: no 3, Triana by Isaac Albeniz
Performer:  Daniel Barenboim (Piano)
Period: Romantic 
Written: 1906; France 
Date of Recording: 1999-2000 
Venue:  Teldec Studio, Berlin, Germany 
Length: 5 Minutes 16 Secs. 

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