Powerful, highly recommended
half | Diamond Bar, CA United States | 06/18/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There are several passable recordings of these trios, but I can finally say this is the one I wish to keep. The passion runs deep and the flaws are hard to find in this recording. (Note: I am heavily influenced by the rendition of the Tchaikovsky, less by the Arensky). Every other recording I have encountered left me wishing for more, and I listened to this one expecting to be disappointed, just I as had been with all others. I was instead left feeling quite satisfied. Some specific points: in the Tchaikovsky, the 3rd variation of the second movement, with perhaps the most exposed piano passages of the piece, Bronfman plays it with such brilliant precision that one is scarcely aware of how treacherous those passages are. Furthermore, the ensemble playing is precise every single step of the way, it never ever gets in the way of the intepretation (which is my gripe with almost every other recording). Also, in the re-statement of the main theme in the last variation, the performers choose to drive the tempo forcefully and passionately, instead of slowing it to a weepy mess as others choose to do. The result is a very satisfying ending. Bravo."
Highly professional, but lacking in passion
Santa Fe Listener | Santa Fe, NM USA | 07/17/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The presence of a Russian virtuoso like Yefim Bronfman should have guaranteed genuine Slavic passion in the great Tchaikovsky Piano Trio, but Bronfman has increasingly been playing it safe. What is this tendency for star musicians in this country like Perlman, Ax, Midori, and now Bronfman to rest on their laurels? Comparison to the impassioned live performance from Argerich-Kremer-Maisky on DG makes this version of the Tchaikovsky sound half asleep.
Naturally the playing is altogether professional, and Sony has provided adequate sonics (though not a patch on the riveting DG sound). However, without total commitment on everyone's part, the Tchaikovsky Trio suffers from sprawl and waywardness, as it does here form time to time. In all, a good performance that misses the mrk for being something really special."