This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
Notes and Editorial Reviews
Don't expect Alexis Weissenberg to imbue Rachmaninov's two piano sonatas with color and sensuality. Instead, revel in swirling textures that boast extraordinary point, precision, and galvanic thrust in the manner of an overachieving Roto Rooter man versus the greasiest sink. Big chords at the peak of climaxes have a whiplash effect that has less to do with volume and force than it does with timing and accent. Even considering the pianist's strong, singing line in both sonatas' slow movements, Weissenberg is not one to linger. His gaunt sonority and rapier articulation make most pianists in the First Sonata sound relatively prolix and mushy. Given Weissenberg's fire-and-ice temperament, it seems fitting that the pianist opts for the Second
Sonata's terser, more streamlined 1931 revised text. I can't pretend to love DG's top-heavy, glassy sonics, yet oddly enough they befit the pianist's approach. In any event, Weissenberg's stimulating, arrestingly individual Rachmaninov interpretations deserve permanent catalog status, and it's good to see this disc available again, courtesy of Arkivmusic.com's on-demand reissue program.
--Jed Distler, ClassicsToday.com
Works on This Recording
Sonata for Piano no 2 in B flat minor, Op. 36 by Sergei Rachmaninov
Alexis Weissenberg (Piano)
Period: 20th Century
Written: 1913/1931; Russia
Notes: Composition written: Russia (1913).
Composition revised: Russia (1931).
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