- Sonata for cello & piano in A minor, Op. 36
- Sonata for cello & piano in A major (arr. from "Sonata for violin & piano")
- Rondo for cello & piano in G minor, B. 171 (Op. 94)
Cellist Robert Cohen and his accompanists, Roger Vignoles and Anthya Rael, deserve credit for their passionate and polished performances of these essential works in the Romantic repertoire, but they are poorly served by CRD's seriously restricted sound quality. Cohen comes off best in the mix, but only because the microphone's proximity keeps him front and center. Even so, his tone often seems thin and lacking full resonance in the lowest octave -- more likely due to the primitive digital engineering than to Cohen's playing. If recorded only a little further away, with more room to expand, Cohen probably would have sounded just fine. The recording also shortchanges Vignoles, who sounds too far away from the cello; his tone is a little muffled in soft passages and excessively metallic and percussive at fortissimo. It takes some concentration, then, to focus on their deeply felt interpretations of Grieg's "Sonata in A minor, Op. 36," and Franck's "Sonata in A major," but the effort is rewarded if one perseveres. Indeed, by the time Rael joins Cohen in Dvorák's "Rondo in G major, Op. 94," the listener may be inured to the sound problems and able, with some imagination, to appreciate the rich playing on its own terms.