SCHUMANN: Quartet for Piano, Violin, Viola, and Cello, Op. 47. BRAHMS: Quintet for Piano, 2 Violins, Viola, and Cello, Op. 34.
Yevgeny Sudbiun, piano. Hrachya Avanesyan and Boris Brovtsyn, violins. Diemut Poppen, viola. Alexander Chaushian, cello.
BIS SACD 2258 TT: 64:32

BACH: Six Motets
Norwegian Soloists' Choir. Ensemble Allegria / Grete Pedersen, cond.
BIS SACD 2251 TT: 67:39

VERESS: String Quartet No. 1 (1931). String Quartet No, 2 (1937), Streichtrio (1954).
CYBELE SACD LC 3738 (3 disks) TT: 64:52 / 79:32 / 79:39

Brilliant Russia pianist Yevgeny Sudbin has recorded exclusively for BIS and already has sterling performances of a wide variety of repertory including piano concertos of Rachmaninoff, Mozart, Beethoven, Medtner and Scriabin. His new recording of Rachmaninoff Concertos 2 and 3 is being released this month. On this fine new SACD he turns once again to chamber music with two of the major works for piano and strings, by Schumann and Brahms. Again he is the consummate artist, his sound blending perfectly with the four string players who are highly regarded solo artists in their own right; apparently they were assembled together for this recording. High quality music-making here, and the BIS engineers have captured their playing with uncommon fidelity and natural sound. Recommended!

The Norwegian Soloists' Choir again shows their consummate artistry and versitality with this SACD devoted entirely to music from six Bach moytets: Komm, Jesu, Komm, BWV 229. Fürchte Disk Nichty, Ich Bin Dir, BWV 228. Der Geist Hilft Unser Schwachheit Auf, BWV 226. Jesu, Meine Freüde, BWV 227. Lobet Den Herrn, Al Alle Heiden, BWV 230. Jesu Christ, Meins Lebens Licht, BWV 118. Singet Dem Herrn Ein Neues Lied, BWV 225. Erling Sandmo's program notes discuss each work and its curcumstances of origin. For this music, the famous Choir h produces a opure, clear soound apropriate for the text, and the minimal accompaniment is provided by the fine Allegria Ensemble. The recordings were made recently in Norway's Ris Kirke in Oslo. CD notes even include the two pitches of the performances, and complete texts nd translations are provided.

One of the oddest SACD issues is this three-disk CYBELE set devoted to Swiss composer Sandor Veress ( 1907 - 1992). It is a deluxe set with fold-out panels, many photos and a 92-page booklet. Veress endured a troubled life filled with polttical persecution. Although he composed profusely, there are few recordings of his music, so thiss release is important as it contains three major chamber works, the first two string quartets and string trio. Veress had intense interest in Hungarian folk music and researched it extensively. That is the subject of the other two disks. Disks 2 and 3 in this set feature recordings discussing, in German, Hungarian folk music, and on occasion we hear Veress' own voice. There are 47 tracks on disk 2, 44 on disk 3. These are mono radio recordings made in 1975. This issue is one of a series of albums that would seem to be only of historic interest. The SACD mastering surely does nothing for the text excerpts. Why SACD? The three disks sell for the price of two.

R.E.B. (February 2018)