It was an eminently sensible decision to couple Zimerman's previously separate Chopin concertos on a single CD. The Ax/Ormandy/RCA disc is the only rival as a coupling, so let me say at once that in different moods I would be equally happy with either.
The origins of Gratto date back to 1996 when he was working with 'Leger De Main' (Chris and Brett Rodler). According to the story of this recording it was a lost tape and abandoned recording which has remained hidden on some dusty shelf for 6 years and has finally make the way to CD players. "Anakin Tumnus" contains 3 long pieces each possessing a towering sound and wide range of sound dynamics, each showing the intricate song writing and instrumental prowess of these talented musicians. Gratto's vocals are sung in a quieter stealth like mode but resound with wonderful contrast to the sharper instrument sounds. In some ways his lyrics and voice carry a slight symmetry to those of Marillion's Fish. Without a question this band played with an intensity and musical likeness that reminds me very much of Anekdoten, Echolyn and even King Crimson.
Igor Markevitch was a leading conductor, known for brilliant performances, especially of twentieth century music. He was also a composer who attracted some interest in his own day. His parents left Kiev when he was two years old. Markevitch was brought up in Vevey, Switzerland. He took piano lessons from his father and then with Paul Loyonnet and also started to compose.