The Ultimate Most Relaxing Classical Piano Music in the Universe

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Patsy Morita
One of Denon's Ultimate Most Relaxing [insert type of music here] in the Universe series that culls performances from the Denon catalog, this disc of piano music encompasses much more than most similar compilations, which generally only feature solo piano music. This one uses movements from piano concertos, piano trios, and even one from Brahms' two piano "Sonata, Op. 34b." And, with the exception of the Adagio from Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" and his "Für Elise," and a couple of other pieces, the 23 selections are a little more diverse than what's in other chillout mixes. Instead of the over-used "Elvira Madigan Andante" from Mozart's "Piano Concerto No. 21," there's ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Patsy Morita
One of Denon's Ultimate Most Relaxing [insert type of music here] in the Universe series that culls performances from the Denon catalog, this disc of piano music encompasses much more than most similar compilations, which generally only feature solo piano music. This one uses movements from piano concertos, piano trios, and even one from Brahms' two piano "Sonata, Op. 34b." And, with the exception of the Adagio from Beethoven's "Moonlight Sonata" and his "Für Elise," and a couple of other pieces, the 23 selections are a little more diverse than what's in other chillout mixes. Instead of the over-used "Elvira Madigan Andante" from Mozart's "Piano Concerto No. 21," there's the Larghetto from the "Piano Concerto No. 24." Instead of Debussy's "Reverie," there's a lovely one by Mussorgsky. As with most compilations, the sound quality and the level of artistry vary from track to track. With the sound, listeners may find themselves adjusting the volume more for the tracks on the second disc than on the first. As for the performers, most play pleasantly, a couple really stand out, and only two tracks are not worth hearing more than once. The ones worth noting are Hélène Grimaud -- with tracks taken from her very first recordings, made when she was a teenager -- Valery Afanassiev, Jacques Rouvier, Bruno-Leonardo Gelber, and Vladimir Tropp. They all have a sensitivity toward the music that makes it exactly what anyone would want for relaxation: delicate shading and soft tones. The ones to avoid are Yuji Takahashi's "Gymnopedie No. 1," with oddly spiking dynamics, and the Andante from Brahms' "Sonata for Two Pianos, Op. 34b," where the two pianists are not very well matched and not always together -- even when they are not supposed to be together. One other annoyance is the fadeout on disc two, track five, the second movement of Schumann's "Piano Concerto," which otherwise goes right into the finale. It's unfortunate that although the programming as a whole is superior to similar collections, the quality of performers and recording isn't completely consistent so that a person could pop the discs in the CD changer, let them go, and just relax.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 7/10/2007
  • Label: Denon Records
  • UPC: 795041765321
  • Catalog Number: 17653
  • Sales rank: 108,404

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Piano Concerto No. 24 in C minor, K. 491: 2. Larghetto - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart & Lausanne Chamber Orchestra (7:37)
  2. 2 Gymnopedie for piano No.1 - Yuji Takahashi & Erik Satie (3:04)
  3. 3 Etudes-Tableaux, for piano, Op. 33: No. 3 - Sergey Rachmaninov & Hélène Grimaud (4:00)
  4. 4 Clair de lune, for piano (Suite Bergamasque No. 3), L. 75/3 - Claude Debussy & Jacques Rouvier (4:50)
  5. 5 Piano Sonata No. 1 in F sharp minor ("Grosse Sonate"), Op. 11: 2. Aria - Robert Schumann & Hélène Grimaud (2:56)
  6. 6 Piano Sonata No. 8 in A minor, K. 310 (K. 300d): Andante cantabile - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart & Ingrid Haebler (9:37)
  7. 7 Ballade for piano No. 1 in G minor, Op. 23, CT. 2 - Frédéric Chopin & Hélène Grimaud (8:23)
  8. 8 Bagatelle for piano in A minor ("Für Elise"), WoO 59 - Ludwig van Beethoven & Annerose Schmidt (3:02)
  9. 9 Rêverie (Duma), for piano (on a theme by Loginov), edited by Karatïgin - Valery Afanassiev & Modest Mussorgsky (4:12)
  10. 10 Work(s): Piano Concerto in A. 2. Larghetto - Johann Sebastian Bach & English Chamber Orchestra (5:34)
  11. 11 Voiles, prelude for piano, L. 117/2 - Claude Debussy & Jacques Rouvier (3:52)
  12. 12 Piano Trio in B flat major ("Archduke"), Op. 97: 3. Andante Cantabile - Ludwig van Beethoven & Suk Trio (12:45)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Piano Sonata No. 3 in F minor, Op. 5: 2. Andante expressivo - Johannes Brahms & Bruno-Leonardo Gelber (11:31)
  2. 2 The Seasons, for piano, Op. 37: January: At the Fireside - Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky & Vladimir Tropp (6:38)
  3. 3 Piano Trio No. 3 in F minor, B. 130 (Op. 65) (once listed as Op. 64): 3. Poco adagio - Antonin Dvorák & Suk Trio (9:48)
  4. 4 Goldberg Variations, for keyboard (Clavier-Übung IV), BWV 988 (BC L9): Aria - Johann Sebastian Bach & Constantin Lifschitz (5:00)
  5. 5 Piano Concerto in A minor, Op. 54: 2. Andante gracioso - Robert Schumann & Vienna Symphony Orchestra (5:39)
  6. 6 Piano Sonata No. 3 in B minor, Op. 58, CT. 203: 3. Largo - Frédéric Chopin & Nikita Magaloff (8:52)
  7. 7 The Well-Tempered Clavier (24), collection of preludes & fugues, Book I, BWV 846-869 (BC L80-103): Prelude No. 22 - Johann Sebastian Bach & Valery Afanassiev (3:10)
  8. 8 Sonata for 2 pianos in F minor, Op. 34b: Andante - Johannes Brahms & Valery Afanassiev (9:50)
  9. 9 The Seasons, for piano, Op. 37: October: Song of Autumn - Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky & Vladimir Tropp (6:01)
  10. 10 Pictures at an Exhibition (Kartinki s vïstavski), for piano: The Old Castle - Jacques Rouvier & Modest Mussorgsky (5:18)
  11. 11 Piano Sonata No. 14 in C sharp minor ("Moonlight"), Op. 27/2: Adagio Sostenuto - Ludwig van Beethoven & Bruno-Leonardo Gelber (6:39)
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