These works, and this recording, work for me. Listening to Korngold's Op.1, you'd never suspect he was 12 years old when he composed it. It's the work of a mature composer, albeit one who would go on to find more of his own voice. But that's the case with all great artists of course. And Zemlinksy's works are always ingenious and rewarding. The professional relationship between these two composers makes the relationship between these two trios all the more interesting. As usual, the Beaux Arts Trio plays impeccably and Philips has created a magnificent recording.
Long recognized as the leading piano trio in a competitive field, the Beaux Arts Trio is known for precise, straightforward performances and recordings of everything in the standard Central European trio literature.
The Beaux Arts Trio performs all of this music with their customary musicality and expertise - David Hurwitz
The Odeon Trio go for gold. Unlike either the Beaux Arts (Philips) or the Fontenay (Teldec), they use three CDs to include everything by Brahms that could possibly be called a piano trio, not forgetting the Op. 114 and Op. 40 wind trios, whose wind parts can well be rendered by strings. They decide, too, that the original 1853 version of the B major Trio is for them, rather than the revised version of 1889 which is more generally favoured.
This recording of Beethoven Trios follows the Van Baerle Trio’s album dedicated to Mendelssohn’s piano trios, and their debut CD, which featured works by Saint-Sa ns, Loevendie and Ravel, received an Edison Award in 2013.
"…The pianist, Chia Chou, deserves particular praise for his wide dynamic and tonal range: the arpeggiated patterns suggest reserves of tonal weight; elsewhere he articulates individual notes with a delicate, crystalline ping. Clear, warm, and appealing sound reproduction further enhances the proceedings. Enthusiastically recommended, particularly to devotees of the French Romantics." ~musicweb-international
"The Trio Parnassus has maintained a reputation as one of the finest piano trios in Germany from the latter-twentieth and early-twenty first centuries despite a fair number of personnel changes. The ensemble has developed a reputation for straddling two rather distinctive worlds in its repertory choices: while it plays standards from the Classical and Romantic periods, as well as many twentieth century and contemporary works, it has also devoted much time to the rediscovery of forgotten compositions by nineteenth century composers like Woldemar Bargiel, Joseph Rheinberger, Philipp Scharwenka, and several others…" ~allmusic
There's beauty aplenty in Parnassus' playing… MDG's recording, by placing the piano (which sounds wonderful throughout) slightly back in the acoustic, achieves a believable and wholly satisfying instrumental balance.