These two performances derive from a concert given at the 16th International Pharos Chamber Music Festival, Cyprus, in 2016. The performers involved clearly play together regularly, certainly at Pharos, apart from their impressive individual credentials. Some, like Yevgeny Sudbin and Alexander Chausian, have well established partnerships on record.
Maurizio Pollini's 2011 concert recording of Johannes Brahms' Piano Concerto No. 1 in D minor is an important document because it not only captures his return to playing with the esteemed Staatskapelle Dresden (his first performance with the group since 1986), and his first collaboration with conductor Christian Thielemann, but it presents the very work the pianist played at his Staatskapelle debut in 1976. All of this background is helpful to know, to understand the significance Deutsche Grammophon attaches to this release, even at the risk of offering a CD that runs just over 45 minutes, without any filler for added value.
As a glance at the above will show, this is not the old Beaux Arts version, for whose restoration I made a plea two years ago, but a new digital account recorded with their new cellist, Peter Wiley and in a different acoustic The Maltings, Snape. In their old version they omitted the fugue (Var. 8), a practice sanctioned by the score (the Borodin on Chandos curiously enough, cut out the variation preceding it) but this time round the players restore it. However, they do make the traditional cut in the finale (bar 9 of page 86 to bar 4 of page 102 Eulenburg score).