Raff: Piano Trios No 2 & 3 / Trio Opus 8

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Joachim Raff (1822-82) is little known today, but he enjoyed considerable success as a composer and teacher during his lifetime. Although he composed an appreciable quantity of orchestral music, Raff was most adept in the chamber music medium. His piano trios are fine examples of his inventiveness, craftsmanship, and gift for melody. Though Trio No. 2 in G major (1863) sounds Brahmsian in its tender opening phrase, it nevertheless goes its own way, displaying Raff's novel approach to individual voicing and thematic development. Beethoven comes to mind in the beautiful theme and variations movement, while the rollicking finale features a repeated episode distinctly Tchaikovskian in character.

The Trio No. 3 in A minor, composed seven years later, follows the same basic pattern of movements. After an ardent opening allegro agitato, a light-hearted scherzo delightfully suggests Schubert's Trout Quintet. Another theme and variations slow movement follows (presenting the opportunity for some fine solo cello work by Mario de Scondi), and the finale returns to the minor mode with a brisk and lively Hungarian dance. The ensemble Trio Opus 8 offers uniformly stylish, impassioned performances, and although CPO's up-close recording gains clarity at the expense of depth and low bass, this imperfection won't prevent you from enjoying this engaging, entertaining music.
--Victor Carr Jr., ClassicsToday.com

Product Description:

  • Catalog Number: 999800-2

  • UPC: 761203980024

  • Label: CPO

  • Composer: Joachim Raff

  • Orchestra/Ensemble: Opus 8 Trio

  • Performer: Eckhard Fischer, Mario de Secondi, Michael Hauber