Austrian baritone Florian Boesch is well-known for his broad art song repertoire, but especially for the lieder of Franz Schubert, which he has performed to much critical acclaim. His recitals and recordings of Schubert's song cycles Die Winterreise, Die schöne Müllerin, and Schwanengesang may be the most discussed, but this fascinating 2014 release shouldn't be overshadowed by them. To a certain extent, Boesch has created a kind of song cycle from the 19 lieder he has selected for Der Wanderer, and the themes of isolation and restless searching give this collection cohesiveness and emotional power. Joined by the extraordinary accompanist Roger Vignoles, Boesch explores the darker songs that preoccupied Schubert in the last years of his life, and while the selections here may not quite match the bleak nihilism of some of the songs in Winterreise or Schwanengesang, several come close in their brooding melodies, unsettling key changes, and unexpected dissonances. Hyperion gives Boesch and Vignoles a balanced sound, and the noiseless studio recording makes the softest utterances fully audible.
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AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson