A mesmerizing modern version
Abel | Hong Kong | 07/23/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Having bumped into high baritone Russell Braun by sheer accident, I fully reaise that there exist today a considerable number of classical artists that are grossly under-rated by the media.
A friend of mine told me earlier on that she's infatuated with a young singer called 'Russell', her favourite after Pavarotti and Bocelli. I frantically searched for such a 'miracle', and thought she was talking about Russell Braun. Alas, certainly it was Russell Watson that she was referring to, but alas, luck was with me who opted for Russell Braun's recording instead.
Fine that people keep on referring back to Fischer-Dieskau's Winterreise as the classic, and there are dozens of top-notch stuff over the years - Schreier, Bostridge, Hampson, even Bonney's female version. In the face of all these 'goodies', Braun's version is not one jot lacking in lustre.
As a foremost requirement for German lieder singing, Braun fully satisfies with his idiomatic diction, having only migrated to USA from West Germany at the age of 17. The accompanist is Mrs Braun herself (Maule), and really could not be bettered in terms of musical collaboration with the singer.
Braun owns a very lyrical high baritone not often found in the operatic world, and reputedly encompasses 3 octaves in terms of vocal range. I am totally amiss as to why this singer is not climbing higher than other new comers like, say, Christian Gerhaher.
If you have not owned any of those 'classic' Winterreise already, this one really would be an ideal choice - do give the new singers a chance."