SCHUBERT: Piano Quintet in A "Trout" Op. post. 114 - D667. Variations on "Trockne Blumen" for flute and piano Op. post. 150 - D802. Piano Trio "Notturno" in E flat, Op. post. 148.
Martin Helmchen, piano; Christian Tetzlaff, violin; Antoine Tamestit, viola; Marie-Elisabeth Hecker, cello; Alois Posch, double bass; Aldo Baertenm, wooden flute
PENTATONE SACD PTC 5186 334 TT: 69:05

HAYDN: Nine Piano Trios
Beaux Arts Trio
PENTATONE SACD 5186 179 (2 disks) TT: 2:03:10

Here are three winners from Pentatone, the first a superlative new recording of a masterpiece, the other two reissues of memorable performances recorded more than three decades ago. Young pianist Martin Helmchen again shows his affinity for Schubert in this magnificent reading of the Trout Quintet. The lovely Trockne Blumen variations, here played on a wooden flute by Aldo Baertenm and Helmchen, is a delight, and the exquisite Notturno brings this well-filled disk to a close. Wonderfully natural sound on this recording made in Siemens Villa, Berlin, August 2008. Pentatone is competing with itself here; they already have a superlative recording of the Quintet featuring members of the Beaux Arts Trio with pianist Menahem Pressler (REVIEW).

The Haydn trios were recorded in May 1976 in Amsterdam's Concertgebouw. The Beaux Arts Trio's sublime performances have been captured to perfection by producer Wilhelm Hellweg, and the warm acoustics of the site are always apparent. Haydn composed profusely for solo voice including 445 arrangements of Scottish, Irish and Welsh folk songs, as well as 48 original songs/lieder.Elly Ameling's set of them was recorded in July 1980 in Musis Sacreen in Armhelm, again with producer Hellweg who here also achieves the most natural of balances. Haydn's 48 lieder are included here, music seldom heard either on record or live concerts, and this is the only complete recording. It goes without saying that Ameling is a wise choice for this repertory, with Jorg Demus the perfect collaborator. 31 of the songs are in German, 15 in English, and 2 in Italian. Texts are provided in original languages only; libretto translations in English, German and French are available on the Pentatone web site:

All of these are quality issues, highly recommended.

R.E.B. (June 2009)