As aural souvenirs of a pair of live performances from the Festival Concert Hall at Festival Hill in Round Top, TX, these recordings of Shostakovich's G minor Piano Quintet and Fauré's D minor Piano Quintet are more than acceptable. Pianist James Dick and the Eusia Quartet do an admirable job of holding both works together and of giving each work a distinct sound and identity -- a forceful and ironic tone in the Shostakovich and a warm and sincere tone in the Fauré. Dick is a powerful player as adept at the vehement energy of Shostakovich as at the suave sensuality of the Fauré while the Eusia moves from sinewy and strident in the Shostakovich to sweet and sentimental in the Fauré. If neither of these performances are first choices -- try the overwhelming Richter/Borodin recording for the Shostakovich and the sophisticated Collard/Parrenin for the Fauré; for those interested in hearing an alternative, the Dick/Eusia recording will do nicely. Round Top Records' live digital sound is clean and clear, but not especially vivid.
AllMusic Review by James Leonard
|Quintet for piano & strings in G minor, Op. 57|
|Piano Quintet No. 1 in D minor, Op. 89|