Dvorak Trios - Tetzlaff & Vogt
Here's an album that represents the opposite of my complaints in another review: not a bland moment here, but emotionally raw, committed and perceptive playing that more than justifies recording this music again. Dvorak's trio no. 3 in F-minor is less well-known and less-frequently played due to the later "Dumky Trio" being so popular, but the F-minor is every bit as good. Here it is placed first to help you notice. If you don't, well that's on you, because this is glorious. Each of the musicians is a soloist, coming together as a trio between other projects, so they don't bring any any received habits to this music. Such is the case with pianist Lars Vogt, who uncovers much textural interest and variety, but also Christian and Tania Tetzlaff who do so much to characterize their parts.
As if the F-minor wasn't enough, the performance of the trio no. 4 (nicknamed the "Dumky" because of its use of the Slavic "Dumka" slow-fast pattern), is both magical and a revelation. This trio is one of those first classical pieces that I knew way back when, but I've grown sick of it to be honest, or I had before this. It had begun to feel like shtick — the swoopy slow intros then hyper rushing, after too many listens like a caricature of itself. And the supposed 'gold standard' recording of the Dumky by the Beaux Arts Trio always seemed too... reverent, or laquered, or something. This one, though, throws all that off. No old habits here, no painting it all with the same brush, instead there's an attention to the actual music, revealing much detail and color I don't remember hearing before. One reason is they don't rush for the sake of it. The first movement is a good example: when the mood changes, it isn't very fast, just snappy, but then again they aren't timid where the music hits hard. Another reason is the string playing is never sappy, more wiry in the case of the violin especially. Overall this music starts to sound like... Dvorak. I love Dvorak, and I could listen to this again.