BEETHOVEN: Piano Trio No. 2 in E-flat Major, Op. 1, No. 2; Piano Trio No. 5 in D Major, Op. 70, No. 1 “Ghost” – Storioni Trio – PentaTone Multichannel SACD

by | Sep 28, 2005 | SACD & Other Hi-Res Reviews | 0 comments

BEETHOVEN: Piano Trio No. 2 in E-flat Major, Op. 1, No. 2; Piano Trio No. 5 in D Major, Op. 70, No. 1 “Ghost” – Storioni Trio

PentaTone Multichannel SACD 5186 071  61:10 ****:

I had never heard of the Storioni Trio Amsterdam, founded 1996 by Bert
van der Roer, piano; Wouter Vossen, violin; and Marc Vossen, cello, who
took their name from a make of Cremona violin (1794) plied by Wouter
Vossen. Now, having auditioned the splendid disc of Beethoven, I would
liken their quicksilver, polished, and fleet command of their medium to
Trio Fontenay and other European ensembles of the first order. After
the E-flat Major Trio’s opening, slow introduction, the Storioni
players propel us into a world of color virtuosity that must have
appalled and delighted Beethoven’s contemporaries. The symphonic
dimensions of the part-writing, and the sheer musculature of the
musical tissue would have daunted anyone used to the gifted-amateur
status of the piano trio of 1795; for with the exception of individual
works of Haydn and Mozart, the expectations for the medum had been
minimal.

Beethoven’s Largo con espressione second movement is an elegant affair,
especially in the surround sound format, which has pearly keyboard
meditations answered by a suave, silken cello line which threatens to
become a cello sonata.  The Scherzo’s trio has a Rossini-like
dervishness, both playful and beguiling.  Beautiful sonic balances
throughout, courtesy of Jean-Marie Geijsen of Polyhymnia studios. The
Ghost Trio of 1808 invokes adventuresome harmonies and eerie
combinations of sound that justify its melodramatic, gothic nickname.
The audacity of Beethoven’s conception, the security of the imagination
radiates from this rendition. Bart van de Roer’s piano artistry is
clearly world-class virtuoso in character, and his dynamic dexterity
and adjustments render the second movement’s swirling riffs into a kind
of diffused mist rising on the heath for a production of Macbeth. The
last movement seems to have urged violinist Wouter Vossen’s own
passionate nature, and the multichannel effect has his torrent of sound
piercing into the musical stratosphere.

–Gary Lemco

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