Murray Perahia

Murray Perahia Plays Bach (Box Set)

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AllMusic Review by

There are critics who seemingly love Murray Perahia's Bach playing and who find his limpid tone enough to commend his performances. At least it must be supposed that it is Perahia's tone that has so enraptured them because it is difficult to find anything else in these performances for which to commend them. Sodden rhythms, soggy textures, sloppy articulation, and affected embellishments are no recommendation and yet it is impossible to go through a single movement in any of Perahia's concertos, suites, and variations that are not sodden, soggy, sloppy, and affected. Beyond that, Perahia's ability to express Bach's contrapuntal genius is almost nil: rarely has line against line counterpoint sounded so little like counterpoint and so much like melody and accompaniment. And beyond that, Perahia's emotional insights into the music seem at best shallow: his Sarabandes are slight, his Adagios are average, his Allegros are all right, but none of them get beneath the surface of the music to the emotional depths below. And beyond even that, Perahia seems unaware of the spiritual greatness of Bach's music: the central Adagio of the Concerto in D minor or the Variation in G minor of the Goldberg Variations are as profound as any music ever conceived by the mind of man, but in Perahia's interpretation, they have no more profundity than a toothache. There have been dozens of better Bach at the piano recordings, starting with Fischer, Backhaus, Kempff, Gould, Hewitt, and Schiff. Perahia is just another pretty tone.

Track Listing - Disc 3

Title/Composer Performer Time
Goldberg Variations, for keyboard (Clavier-Übung IV), BWV 988 (BC L9)
1
3:58
2
1:50
3
1:35
4
1:56
5
1:07
6
1:24
7
1:24
8
1:46
9
1:51
10
2:11
11
1:33
12
1:46
13
2:17
14
4:59
15
2:06
16
4:19
17
2:44
18
1:41
19
1:24
20
1:29
21
1:51
22
2:45
23
1:29
24
1:55
25
2:32
26
7:24
27
1:58
28
1:38
29
2:10
30
2:09
31
1:43
32
2:20
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