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Posted October 1, 2010
Alexander Paley gives us a highly ornamented account, taking every repeat, unlike Gould and most other performers. He also plays without haste those variations he feels should be deliberate. Two disks give him the breathing space he needs. If you want to immerse yourself in a true Baroque experience, then this recording is for you. If you want a dry, staccato, rapid performance, then go elsewhere. This is a piano performance. Paley in a phenomenal pianist, who uses all the color of his instrument to convince the listener of the majesty of Bach's genius. This rendition is not academic: it is alive, dreamy, intense, intimate, grand, wonderful. Many previous pianists' attempts at ornamentation failed, to my mind, because the performer could not get into the Baroque spirit. The ornamentation seemed contrived, added on, and ultimately annoying. By contrast, the ornamentation here is organic -- it grows out of the written notes. Highly recommended.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.