One of the most grown-up review sites around
One of the most grown-up review sites around

Search MusicWeb Here
 

 

International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor in Chief: Rob Barnett

BUY NOW 

Crotchet   AmazonUK   AmazonUS

Ernest BLOCH (1880-1959)
Piano Quintet No. 1 (1923) [32.56]
Piano Quintet No. 2 (1957) [17.59]
Ivan Klánský (piano)
Kocian Quartet
rec. Domovina Studio, Prague, 21-22 Jan 2002. DDD
PRAGA DIGITALS PRD 250185 [50.46]


When Bloch took up Maud Alan's invitation to accompany her troupe on a tour of the USA he began a long if not unequivocal chapter of association with that country. He was there in Cleveland from 1916 to 1930 but returned for the Oregon years from 1939 to 1959. During this time, especially the final spell, he also spent long periods in Paris and Switzerland.

The quintets belong to each of the two sojourns. The First Quintet dates from the year before he took U.S. citizenship. Like the Second it is in three movements. The first is strenuous, angry and has a Hungarian twang. It lacks any Semitic flavour unlike the glorious Schelomo and the slightly less impressive Israel Symphony. The second movement is a masterfully concentrated mystic study sustained over 10.22. The finale is an exercise in Bartók-like aggression and excitement; Bloch's own Allegro Barbaro. There is a momentary edit blip in this movement (tr.3, 00.14).

The Second Quintet is much shorter. It inhabits some odd moods. The first movement suggests a surreal landscape - nothing atonal or serial just intense singing, obsessive and sharply searching activity. The Kocians and Klánský make much of the romantic surge. It sounds like a desperate film noir score. The sleepy otherworldliness of the central movement is related in atmosphere.

These two piano quintets fill a needy gap in the catalogues. Currently the Arabesque and Pro Arte recordings are unavailable. This is no stop gap and it is warmly commended to those interested in Bloch's chamber music.

Rob Barnett

 



Gerard Hoffnung CDs

Advertising on
Musicweb



Donate and get a free CD

New Releases

Naxos Classical

 

Musicweb sells the following labels
Acte Préalable
(THE Polish label)
Altus 10% off
Arcodiva
Atoll 10% off
CDAccord
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Hortus
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sheva £2 off
Sheva Contemporary
Sterling 10% off
Toccata Classics


Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing
sample

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
   
Rob Barnett
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
Editor in Chief
   Vacant
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Return to Index

Untitled Document


Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.