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CD Review

Ernst Bloch

  • Quintet for Piano & Strings #1 *
  • Quintet for Piano & Strings #2 *
  • 2 Pieces for String Quartet
  • Night
  • Paysages
* Piers Lane, piano
Goldner Quartet
Hyperion CDA67638 70m DDD
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Without any doubt, this CD, which is dedicated to Bloch's chamber music, is one of the most compelling which I've listened to in recent years. Although one has to say that the Quintets are pretty well served on record, these interpretations by Piers Lane and the Goldner Quartet are pretty well nigh definitive.

The First Quintet dates from the early 1920's and shades of Bartók, Fauré and Chausson are quite evident. It's profound emotional atmosphere is rather difficult to bring off but it goes without saying that Lane and the Goldner are perfect advocates of the music.

The 1957 Quinter is even more of a find and in this great work, one can relish the several original interpretative touches which give the music added immediacy, vibrancy and brilliancy. Although there are overtones from the first work, the emotional language is altogether on another level, Bloch was already suffering from cancer when he wrote it.

So there you have it, a marvelous disc, a true testament to the great Bloch at his very finest in what can only be termed as the chamber issue of the year.

Copyright © 2008, Gerald Fenech