Goldner String Quartet / Piers Lane

Dvorák: Piano Quintets, Opp. 5 & 81

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The pairing of Dvorák's two richly romantic piano quintets in A major makes as much obvious sense as the pairing of virtuoso pianist Piers Lane with the vigorous Goldner String Quartet on this 2009 Hyperion recording. Lane, perhaps best remembered for his thrilling Scriabin recordings, delivers a technically impeccable and emotionally expressive performance of the later, better known quintet, while the Goldner String Quartet, whose earlier Hyperion disc of Bridge's chamber music was hailed by British music enthusiasts, turns in a robust, yet wholly controlled performance, and the combination of the two is as cogent as it is convincing. The account of the later quintet, particularly its moody Dumka and savage Furiant, is as probing as the finest. The passionate reading of the earlier quintet is even better, compelling the listener to reconsider the value of this chronically underappreciated early work. Recorded in digital sound that's arguably a bit closer than it should be, this disc deserves to be heard by anyone who enjoys the works or the composer.

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