“To add to the pleasures of the disc, the warm sound –as usual with PentaTone- is exceptional; indeed, in surround mode, it gives as truthful a sense of a piano trio as any recording I know. All in all a remarkable release”.
Peter J. Rabinowitz, International Record Review
GRAMOPHONE – Editor’s choice. Here’s a starry line-up who really know how to play chamber music. “There is something awfully exciting about seeing, or rather hearing, three leading talents of the younger generation joining forces…. An urgent, questing disc.
James Inverne, Gramophone
“This new recording is irresistible, with the three players caught in a wholly natural ambience. It’s always a good sign when you don’t want to stop playing a disc long enough to write about it.”
Harriet Smith, Gramophone
“Pentatone has another winner in this issue of Mendelssohn's two piano trios. Their star violinist Julia Fischer is joined by two other major young artists, pianist Jonathan Gilad, and cellist Daniel Müller-Schott in vivid performances of these delightful Mendelssohn works. Wolf Werth and Job Maarse produced this recording which was made in a radio studio in Cologne in February 2006. Excellent sound, with the performers in front, ambient sound from the rear.
Robert Benson, classicalcdreview.com
“Julia Fischer’s violin lines, though hard-driven in the outer movements, also convey warmth and shapeliness in the music’s quietly intense passages: the almost prayerful slow movements, for example, or parts of the C minor Trio’s finale. Daniel Müller-Schott’s cello playing matches those extremes and adds an engaging lugubriousness when Mendelssohn seems to invite it, as in the opening bars of the D minor Trio. And Jonathan Gilad’s piano, woven beautifully into the texture, has a bright sparkle of a sort that other recordings of these works don’t quite match.”
Allan Kozinn, New York Times
“In sum, this release's positive qualities merit a warm, if not unequivocal recommendation.”
Jed Distler, Classics Today
“It’s not often that a chamber-music recording grabs me as this one has…. The performances on this hybrid SACD sizzle, and the finale had my blood pounding -- it is one of the most exciting bits of music making I have heard all year….I don’t give ratings in this column, but if I did, this disc would be at the very top of the scale.”
Rad Bennett, ultraaudio.com
“These performances are paragons of classical-era restraint and grace, the most distinguished playing coming from the least-known of the three, pianist Jonathan Gilad. He has that Mozartean talent for saying great things with intricately wrought sound.
The SACD sound is a surprising plus: Though Mendelssohn's string writing represents a close collaboration between violin and cello, the sound separation never leaves any doubt about who is doing what.”
David Patrick Stearns, Philadelphia Inquirer
“The sound on this SACD disc is demonstration quality. The plain CD layer, although recorded at a somewhat lower dynamic level, is also quite good. I'm consistently impressed with the sound on these PentaTone hybrid SACD releases.“
If you're in the market for a CD of these works, don't hesitate. This release joins with the greatest every made of these marvellous pieces.”
Scott Morrison, Amazon.com
“This has to be one of the best discs of chamber music making I have ever heard and certainly one of the best recorded. Right from the moment that Daniel Muller-Schott opens the D minor trio one sense that this is really very special and the following entrances from Jonathan Gilad and Julia Fischer only confirm that feeling; despite all three being concert soloists in their own right, this is a real meeting of minds. This is playing that makes one sit up and take notice for all the right reasons; it certainly completely eclipses all other versions of this wonderful music I have heard.”
John Broggio, SA-CD.net
“Since the foundation of PentaTone Classics in 2001, their enterprising programming; appealing contemporary presentations; consistently high quality performances and state of the art recordings have been nothing short of astonishing. I look forward enthusiastically to each of their stylish new releases and this hybrid Super Audio CD of Mendelssohn’s two Piano Trios was no exception. After a check of the accompanying marketing information it seems that this disc has already been selected as a Gramophone ‘Editor’s Choice’ and the recipient of a Diapason d'Or award.
PentaTone have provided a smart contemporary presentation, interesting and detailed annotation, excellent sonics together with superb performances. What more could one ask. This is certainly a disc to dash out and purchase.
Michael Cookson, Musicweb
These are quite outstanding readings from the trio of Fischer, Gilad & Müller-Schott in these often underrated Mendelssohn Piano Trios. Their security of ensemble is breathtaking and one can detect a compelling sense of enjoyment from the players. These are assured and enchanting interpretations that provide a wide spectrum of brilliant colours. I believe that these performances surpass the best of the available versions.
…. Julia Fischer and her companions Jonathan Gilad and Daniel Müller-Schott, all under 30, enter the field with markedly more romantic interpretations. The recording balance places Fischer’s violin slightly in the shadows; unusually, her playing too has its shy side. But the passions of youth erupt in Gilad’s crisply articulated piano and Müller-Schott’s aching cello.
Geoff Brown,The Times August 18, 2006
MENDELSSOHN’S piano trios have become so ubiquitous that it can be as hard for listeners to know what to hope for in a new recording as it must be for performers to figure out what to offer.
….. The three superb musicians on this new recording, all in their 20’s, face the hefty competition easily by playing with an irresistible spontaneity best heard in the scherzos, where — even in the more troubled C minor Trio (Op. 66) — they momentarily evoke the trim sprightliness of a much younger Mendelssohn. They approach these works as interior high dramas, contests between melancholy and ecstasy. And if the passion in their playing puts them closer to Istomin-Stern-Rose than to Cortot and company, they also play with an unassailable precision.
….. Daniel Müller-Schott’s cello playing matches those extremes and adds an engaging lugubriousness when Mendelssohn seems to invite it, as in the opening bars of the D minor Trio.
New York Times, 23. Juli 2006, Allan Kozinn