couple of years ago, the Trio Campanella came out with a striking
recording of Albeniz’s Iberia in
an arrangement for three guitars. Although I did not review
that recording, I have heard it many times and have found it
one of the more enjoyable discs in my collection. With this
recording of Goyescas, the trio, aided by Christophe
Dejour’s marvelously idiomatic arrangements proves itself to
be a musical force with which to be reckoned. To put it simply,
this is the finest recording of music for guitars that I have
begin with, the material is beyond reproach. Granados’s musical
renderings of Goya’s portraits of eighteenth century life in
Madrid are amongst the finest compositions in the piano literature. Dejour
has sensitively adapted the music for his ensemble, and none
of the striking piano colors are lost. Too complicated for a
single guitar, this ensemble idea fits the music like a glove,
and the sound is divine.
equal importance is the quality of the playing. These three
musicians play together with the perfection of a Swiss timepiece.
The palette of tonal color that they achieve is almost orchestral.
yet, the recording is devoid of all the things that I hate in
guitar recordings. There are no incessantly squeaking strings.
I am told that guitarists often restring their instruments just
before a recording session, and that the new strings tend to
squawk with every change of hand position. Gone also is the
maddening sniffing and snorting for which guitarists - and string
quartets - are notorious.
is left is a beautiful sound, warmly recorded and oh my, what
splendid music! There are some purists who will fuss at the
transcription idea, but there should be no reason to quibble
here. The rich warm tone of the three guitars is perfectly suited
to the vivid colors and sophisticated rhythms of the music.
There is little to say other than “go buy this disc and enjoy
it.” It makes me anxious to revisit their earlier recording
of the Albeniz mentioned above (Naxos 8.557064), and anxiously to await what
will come next from this outstanding ensemble.
see also Review
by Glyn Pursglove