Mompou - Piano Works
Arcadi Volodos (pf)
Sony Classical 88765 43326-2 Buy now
Including: Charmes – No 6, …pour appeler la joie. Damunt de tu només les flors (trans Volodos). Dialogues – I; II. Hoy la tierra y los cielos me sonríen (trans Volodos). Música callada – No 1, Angélico; No 2, Lent; No 6, Lento; No 11, Allegretto; No 15, Lento – plaintif; No 16, Calme; No 21, Lento; No 22, Molto lento e tranquillo; No 24, Moderato; No 25; No 27, Lento molto. Paisajes – No 2, Le lac. Préludes – No 7, Palmier d’étoiles; No 12. Scènes d’enfants
(63’ • DDD)
Who would have imagined Arcadi Volodos in Mompou? Celebrated in outsize virtuoso repertoire and for his cool take on the white-hot transcriptions of Cziffra and Horowitz, he now turns to music of an ultimate inwardness and confidentiality. Mompou may be a ‘minor muse’ (Wilfrid Mellers) but he surely illustrates Goethe’s belief that ‘it is when working within limits that mastery reveals itself’.
Certainly you will rarely if ever hear Mompou’s introspection caught and held with greater affection and finesse. Volodos’s records and appearances may be few and far between; but whether in his torrential if superfine virtuosity or in a more rarefied poetry (I am thinking of his disc of Schubert’s G major Sonata – 6/02), his command is phenomenal. How vividly he responds to the first of his 24 items (‘Palmier d’étoiles’), to the composer’s transition from his occasional volatility to more familiar patterns and lyricism; how caressingly he embroiders Mompou’s spare outlines in two of his own transcriptions. He gives a dream performance of ‘Jeunes filles au jardin’ (Scènes d’enfants) and captures all of the move from tranquillity to less peaceful ripples and the cries of wildlife in ‘Le lac’. Finally, in a selection from Música callada, Volodos takes us into a world so veiled in mystery that sound itself becomes a paradoxical intrusion. Once again his playing is of an unfaltering poise and translucency. Sony’s sound is ideal. This is a disc in a million.