FRANZ SCHUBERT - Piano Works Vol. 2 - Paul Lewis

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FRANZ SCHUBERT - Piano Works Vol. 2 - Paul Lewis (Piano) - 2-Disc Set - 3149020213629 - Released: September 2012 - Harmonia Mundi 902136/37

1} Wandererfantasie Op.15, D.760 in C Major
2} 4 Impromptus Op. post. 142, D.935
3} Sonata No. 16 Op.42, D.845 in A Minor
4} 6 Moments musicaux Op. 94, D.780
5} Allegretto in C Minor, D.915

"Time and again, you marvel at the confidence and sureness of Lewis' playing, combined with the finesse and musicality that he has always displayed. It's the kind of playing, in fact, where comparisons cease to matter." {Gramophone - Volume 1}

In a way very similar to a previous recording of Franz Schubert lieder with tenor Mark Padmore reviewed here, in which pianist Paul Lewis, even though playing the secondary role of accompanist, provided the backbone for the emotional impetus behind the music, this new recording finds him uncovering the very essence and motivation behind every note on the page.

When I, for example, sit at the piano and play the Sonata No. 16 Op.42, D.845 in A Minor, I find myself drifting into boredom after a while, constantly of the opinion that Schubert sometimes overstates his material in some of its movements. But yet Paul Lewis makes it clear that not a single note is superfluous. He manipulates the shape and contour of each and every phrase in ways that seem to create in them a slightly different musical/emotional outcome. If you've heard his rendition of the Beethoven sonatas, you will know what I mean. Under his hands, the keyboard his not merely a mechanical device where at any given moment some notes are on while others are off. It is a gateway, a portal, into the composer's intent.

Quite simply put, Paul Lewis has a way of making you feel that there was a living soul behind the creation of every work he performs. Highly recommended!

Jean-Yves Duperron - October 2012