One of Spain’s most renowned Piano Trios, the Trío Arriaga, explores two masterpieces of the repertoire: Tchaikovsky’s ambitious two-movement Piano Trio, op. 50, and Shostakovich’s Trio No. 2, op. 67.
Both selections were composed under the inspiration of the death of a loved one. They represent a milestone of the chamber music repertoire. Here brilliantly performed by the Trío Arriaga.
Elegie was recorded direct to Stereo and 5 Channel DSD 256. This is a Pure DSD release, exclusively available in Pure DSD at NativeDSD.Com!
Juan Luis Gallego – Violin
David Apellániz – Cello
Daniel Ligorio – Piano
TracklistPlease note that the below previews are loaded as 44.1 kHz / 16 bit.
Total time: 01:13:00
|Analog to Digital Converter|
Horus, Merging Technologies
Dutch & Dutch 8c
Horus, Merging Technologies
Sonodore RCM-402, Pearl CC-22 & Schoeps
|Original Recording Format|
Steinway & Sons
Auditorio de Zaragoza, Sala Mozart in Zaragoza, Spain on August 17-19, 2020
Pyramix Workstation, Merging Technologies
|Release Date||February 18, 2022|
Spain’s most renowned piano trio, Trío Arriaga, make a simply stunning first appearance on Eudora Records with two masterpieces: Tchaikovsky’s ambitious two-movement Piano Trio in A minor, op. 50; and Shostakovich’s challenging Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, op. 67. Both composed under the inspiration of the death of a loved one, these works represent highpoints of the chamber music repertoire.
The album commences with Tchaikovsky’s long elegant lines, filled with emotional longing and remorse. Trío Arriaga plumb these depths with a brilliant elegance and blending of tone, power and dynamic contrasts. In the first movement, the weight, texture, power, and timbral complexity of Daniel Ligorio’s piano is captured superbly in all the dynamic glory of which this superb Steinway is capable. Throughout, Felipe Rodríguez on violin and David Apellániz on cello maintain a fully sympathetic, lustrous dialog. Together, these three highly skilled and empathetic players deliver to us an emotionally charged, singing, dynamic performance fully worthy of this great musical masterpiece. In their hands, Tchaikovsky’s music simply soars.
The second movement of the Tchaikovsky trio is a series of thirteen theme and variations, deliciously complex, intricately woven. Trío Arriaga navigate the dangers of these variations with lithe unerring accuracy, while continually extracting deeper and deeper insights into the music. The variations begin with a simple theme played on the piano. Then violin adds it’s voice, followed by cello, and with the piano moving all the while. As fitting with a set of variations, each following section is more intricate, more complex, more challenging. And the Arriaga maintain clarity, poise, and, perhaps most importantly, interest throughout. These are not performances that simply lumber along. No, they maintain a delicate, undulating, dancing flow that brings to the fore the inventiveness with which Tchaikovsky imbued this work. As they work through the variations, their delivery rises in power and dynamic range as the variations progress to a powerful emotion-laden culmination in the finale and coda.
So, if Trio Arriaga does such a nice job with the lyrical elegance and tonal beauty of Tchaikovsky, how do they manage on the angular, tonally jarring, and chromatic Shostakovich? Just great! They switch gears and centuries seamlessly. They swim with Shostakovich as if made for his music. That the Arriaga can move so easily and so compellingly across the music of these two great, but hugely dissimilar composers, is a credit to their skill and musicianship.
So, do I like this performance? Indeed, indeed, indeed. The Arriaga easily match, if not exceed, the intensity of earlier performances and in far better sound quality. It has become my point of reference.
Their selection of Gonzalo Noqué and Eudora Records has served them well in this recording. It is perhaps the best recording I’ve yet heard from Gonzalo. He has done a very impressive job of capturing these three instrumentalists in a very natural acoustic environment with each performer very realistically positioned in the sound space relative to each of the others. The sound is exquisite: powerful, delicate, highly detailed, harmonically complex, and with air and extension one dreams to hear in a recording.
Recorded in Pure DSD, with no DXD post-processing, the engineering is a tribute to Eudora’s commitment to delivering the most accurate and transparent recordings achievable with today’s technology. This recording is one that stands in a very high rank in my music library.
These searching, deeply penetrating, and searingly wrought performances by Trío Arriaga of two elegiac masterpieces left me emotionally drained…and uplifted. After first listening to Shostakovich’s Piano Trio No. 2 in E Minor, I had to stop and collect my energy. The Arriaga’s performance had simply wrung me out. In the best way—give me more, I say!
This album earns my highest recommendation for both performance and recorded sound. It is simply excellent.
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