|Review by Beethovenfan September 28, 2009 (5 of 5 found this review helpful)
|Listening to the sonata op 81a, the first thing that hit me was the palette of colours Brautigam gets out of the instrument. One moment he gently caresses some limits of the instrument, a few bars futher, the whole instrument sings as if there are no limits. The main profits of this reading are the astonishing pianoforte, the colours Brautigam adds to this composition, and the SACD sound quality, the reading itself resides amongst the existing top versions.
The same goes for the sonata op 90 and so far everything is as we could expect after the 6 previous discs and I was wondering what he would do with the sonata op 106.
The Hammerklaviersonate is one of those works that has been analysed, described, explained in so many essays, lots of books, one of those Beethoven works for which one can find almost hundred recordings. It is unarguably considered as one of Beethovenís absolute masterpieces. And yet I never liked it... I heard Badura-Skoda, Serkin, Binns, Willis, but no one could convince me, no one could affect me and as I am a Beethoven fan this was always my missing link in my Beethoven cult.
Until I heard Brautigam on this SACD. This is for me his greatest achievement over the 7 Beethoven discs. A breathtaking feeling for everything on the right place. His tempo, speed, accents, volume, absolutely everything is combined to one unique reading. Yes, this is a Beethoven sonata! I experienced how Beethovenís genius, Brautigams insight and virtuosity and the sound of the instrument blended to one grasping, divine moment of beautiful music.
The for artist ans listener demanding fugue is heavenly presented, the complex structure comes out crystal clear.
Add the marvelous sound of the SACD medium and one can consider this SACD as a new reference in recording history. I hope we donít have to wait another year for the Last Sonatas...
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