- Piano Trio in A minor ("In Memory of a Great Artist"), Op. 50
- Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, Op. 67
While the Rosamunde Trio itself has only been in existence since 2002, its members have more than two decades of chamber music experience in other combinations. The result is a very refined, polished ensemble whose years of experience come across in its unified musical vision in this recording of the Tchaikovsky and Shostakovich second piano trios. The Tchaikovsky "Trio," which has the ability to get bogged down because of its length, is fresh and engaging. Its frequent use of octaves between the string instruments poses no difficulty in the intonation department as it does in so many other recordings. There are times when listeners might wish that the members of the Rosamunde Trio would play with a little more edge and aggression, as even powerful chords and accents are generally legato, but this softer approach is a small price to pay for an otherwise successful interpretation. The Shostakovich "Second Trio" is equally well performed. The opening of the first movement is simply haunting, and the ensemble achieves a true feeling of isolation and despondency. The second movement finds the edge that was sometimes missing in the Tchaikovsky, and the brisk movement is tossed off with incredible speed and accuracy. The highlight, however, is the beautifully maudlin and forlorn third movement. Altogether, this album is a good choice for listeners looking for good introductory recordings for these two cornerstones of the literature.