Schubert: 4 Impromptus, D. 899 & 935 [Germany]

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
Hundreds of recordings of Schubert's two sets of Impromptus have appeared since the release of these recordings in the early 1970s, yet they have themselves gone through several rounds of reissues. The reason is simple: they approach perfection. Schubert's "Impromptus" live up to their name with seemingly spontaneous chains of musical ideas, but, as always with Schubert, the ideas are always intricately connected at a deeper level. Brendel's genius is to find the balance between poetic effect and inner logic. The sheer lyricism of many passages may surprise listeners who know Brendel through his supremely insightful but undeniably intellectual readings of Beethoven, but ...
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CD (German Import)
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Manheim
Hundreds of recordings of Schubert's two sets of Impromptus have appeared since the release of these recordings in the early 1970s, yet they have themselves gone through several rounds of reissues. The reason is simple: they approach perfection. Schubert's "Impromptus" live up to their name with seemingly spontaneous chains of musical ideas, but, as always with Schubert, the ideas are always intricately connected at a deeper level. Brendel's genius is to find the balance between poetic effect and inner logic. The sheer lyricism of many passages may surprise listeners who know Brendel through his supremely insightful but undeniably intellectual readings of Beethoven, but no less striking is the way each melody seems to flow into the next. Sample one of the famous passages, for example the dreamlike arpeggios at the beginning of the "Impromptu in A flat major from the D. 899" set. It is liquid, it is hypnotic, and yet everywhere it seems to move ineluctably forward. This album contains material added to Brendel's original recordings of the two sets of Impromptus; this appendix was very easy for Philips to do badly, but the collection of lesser-known pieces at the end takes on the quality of a set of encores that the pianist richly deserves, landing on the mysteriously calm and rarely heard "Hungarian Melody in B minor, D. 817." The only possible complaint here is that the digital transfers don't do the original LP sound any favors; the piano sounds washed out. For daily listening, however, this remains a landmark of the recorded Schubert repertoire.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 2/15/1995
  • Label: Philips Import
  • UPC: 028944254327
  • Catalog Number: 442543
  • Sales rank: 385,846

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1–4 Impromptus (4) for piano, D. 899 (Op. 90) - Franz Schubert & Alfred Brendel (27:35)
  2. 5–8 Impromptus (4) for piano, D. 935 (Op. posth. 142) - Franz Schubert & Alfred Brendel (34:25)
  3. 6 Allegretto for piano in C minor, D. 915 - Franz Schubert & Alfred Brendel (4:24)
  4. 7 Écossaises (11) for piano, D. 781 - Franz Schubert & Alfred Brendel (3:49)
  5. 8 Hungarian Melody for piano in B minor (Ungarische Melodie), D. 817 - Franz Schubert & Alfred Brendel (3:46)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Alfred Brendel Primary Artist
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