The very best of Deutsche Grammophon’s piano recordings on 40 CDs, limited edition. From Aimard (The Art of Fugue) to Zimerman (his prize-winning Debussy Preludes on 1 CD for the first time), comprising all the great names – Argerich, Barenboim, Michelangeli, Gilels, Haskil, Horowitz, Kempff, Kissin, Pogorelich, Pollini, Richter; and the new names – Blechacz, Grimaud, Lang Lang, Trifonov, Yuja Wang, Yundi – this is the ideal set to form the cornerstone of a piano collection.
At the end of his life, Horowitz had chosen to record for Deutsche Grammophon. The Hamburg label reissues all of its recordings, 6 CDs, commemorating the centenary of the birth of the pianist.
It may surprise you to learn that, despite his untouchable reputation with the public, Vladimir Horowitz enjoyed a certain dubious reputation with the critics. For many, he was the epitome of the witless virtuoso, all technique and vulgar display, and no brains. There was some truth in this to the extent that he really could be variable on record, but by general consensus his Masterworks recordings show him at his absolute best.
It may surprise you to learn that, despite his untouchable reputation with the public, Vladimir Horowitz enjoyed a certain dubious reputation with the critics. For many, he was the epitome of the witless virtuoso, all technique and vulgar display, and no brains.
Among top-tier classical composers, Franz Schubert may well have left the most impressive showing in terms of sheer productivity within his rather limited range of time; though active only about 18 years, Schubert produced some 1,100 works - one does not know when he must have slept; perhaps he didn't. In the budget category, Decca has produced the five-CD set Ultimate Schubert, which contains just 11 works - one one-hundredth of his output - in decent, mostly older, stereo recordings.
For decades, internationally acclaimed pianist Rudolf Buchbinder has been researching Schubert's original scores and early printed editions. With his new album, he offers an unequivocal interpretation of Schubert's much loved Impromptus D 899 and his last Sonata, D 960. Buchbinder is considered the one living pianist who personifies the Viennese classical tradition, and in keeping with that, Schubert was recorded live at the famed Golden Hall of the Musikverein in Vienna.
This feast for the ears almost defies classification. Richard Horowitz is probably best known for his award-winning score to the Bernardo Bertolucci movie, The Sheltering Sky. Featured on the album is Tehran singer Sussan Deyhim; her voice is extremely expressive in an "x-tatic" Middle Eastern style, with its distinctive embellishments and phrasing. Horowitz takes recordings of her voice and layers it in subtle yet exotic tapestries and harmonies. This is not the ripoff sampling done so often on ambient dance albums. Deyhim's voice is the center of the compositions, and her artistry is always honored. At times, her combined voices sound like the Manhattan Transfer, but when the title track features 84 recombined samples of her voice, the result is very unique. Although the sound processing is important, the album features many live musicians, including world music expert Jaron Lanier and members of the Moroccan National Radio and Television Orchestra. Majoun offers layers upon veils of mysteries and never stoops to trite Middle Eastern musical clichés. Highly recommended.