Naida Cole

Reflections

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    5
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AllMusic Review by

Pianist Naida Cole has been called "an artist to watch." While Cole is an attractive young woman, it's curious as to what it is people should be watching for. Cole's piano playing is technically impressive, but her performances are nearly devoid of interpretive interest. She bashes her way through Ravel's Miroirs, batters her way through Bartók's Improvisations, and blusters her way through Liszt's sonata while nailing the notes, but she misses the meaning. There is tonal beauty in Miroirs, but Cole's brittle tone belies it. There is structural integrity to Bartók's Improvisations, but Cole's blunt performance subverts it. There are emotional heights, spiritual depths, virtuostic brilliance, and sensual beauty in Liszt's sonata and Cole goes flying past all of it without looking back. This is technically impressive, but interpretatively uninvolving.

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