This release sees Murray Perahia returning to Brahms after a significant series of excellent Bach recordings for Sony Classical. His 1991 Sony recording of the Sonata No.3 has an assortment of Intermezzos and Rhapsodies as a filler, but this new disc sees Perahia taking the later opus numbers head-on, working up to them chronologically via the Handel Variations and Rhapsodies Op.79 which, as Katrin Eich says in her booklet notes, each represent an ‘end point’ at certain stages in Brahms’ compositional output.
"…Artists as individually outstanding as Gould, Tureck, Koroliov, and Schiff have all found solutions that are equally valid, but none, I think, have ever made the music sound so naturally, joyously at home on the modern piano as has Perahia. With gorgeously rich recorded sound fully worthy of the interpretation, this Goldberg Variations easily joins my short list of recommendations on any instrument. Perahia has given us a recording for the ages, no doubt about it." ~classicstoday
A peerless conception and realization of Bach's Goldberg Variations. Perhaps the most telling aspect of listening to Perahia's recording for me is that when it is finished, I want to start again at the beginning. It is as if a "world" is contained in this piece, and I am reluctant to leave it.
Radu Lupu and Murray Perahia should have recorded all of Mozart's piano music for four hands, which includes several neglected masterpieces. This disc reflects their ideal partnership, two artists of great sensitivity collaborating in performances that feature constant interplay of parts, alertness to each other's work, and superb playing as individuals. The Concerto for Two Pianos ripples along without a care in the world, just as it should, and the English Chamber Orchestra doesn't seem to care that nobody is conducting it. The pieces without orchestra are a bit less significant (as is the Concerto for Three Pianos), but the playing is so beautiful you won't care.
In recognition of his 40th anniversary with the label, Sony Classical is proud to present Murray Perahia: The First 40 Years.
This limited- edition box set includes the artist’s complete recordings for Sony Classical on 68 CDs packaged in mini sleeves featuring the original album cover artwork.
"Perahia doing Bach, as Perahia does Bach: very clean and very smooth. Very un-Gould. If Gould uses the piano to try and emulate the detached sound of a harpsichord (always sans pedal), Perahia is almost the opposite. Having said so, the sound Perahia achieves in the second movement (largo) of Concerto No. 5 (BWV 1056) is simply fabulous … one of my favourite piano sounds on SACD (after the Tchetuev Schnittke SACD on Caro Mitis). Beautifully recorded. Perahia's Goldberg variations on SACD is now almost impossible to find, and this SACD seems to be heading the same way, so grab it while you can. Highly recommended." ~sa-cd.net