Critic Jedd Distler writes in his note: "An aesthetic of fierce control and absolute accounting for every note governs Michelangeli's way with Beethoven's Sonata in E-flat Op. 7, his second to largest work in the genre, next to the mighty "Hammerklavier" Op. 106. Reviewing the pianist's 1970 studio recording in High Fidelity, Harris Goldsmith accurately described 'the patiently coaxed detail and ultraclarity of partwriting' where 'inner lines emerge from the fabric with a spatial immediacy, the result of endless hours of drudgery and experimentation. Yet is it really desirable for each strand of sound to come forth in glorious technicolor? Must every detail unsubtly pounce upon the unsuspecting listener like a fierce panther upon its prey?' While the live performance from Bonn offered here substantiates some of Goldsmith's quibbles, such as the third movement's outsized accents, plus the pianist's aforementioned 'breaking of hands,' the recording itself cogently conveys how Michelangeli's sonority penetrated and congealed in a first-rate concert hall, thereby creating a viable context for his so-called pianistic "effects." Could it be that Michelangeli, who arguably cancelled more concerts than he actually played, was first and foremost a public performer?"
CD-1162(1) MICHELANGELI PLAYS BEETHOVEN: Piano Concerto No 5 in E-flat, "Emperor" Op. 73 (39:38) ORTF, Jean Martinon, 1970 Lausanne Festival (stereo) Piano Sonata No 4 in E-flat, Op. 7 (34:27) Bonn, 1970 (mono) "Emperor" Concerto previously unreleased; Sonata previously released on LP only Issued with the kind cooperation of the estate of Arturo Benedetti Michelangeli Total time: 1:15:38 AAD UPC#017685-11622-3
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