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This is a beautifully realised disc. The young German pianist Alexander Krichel’s fourth album for Sony offers Ravel performances that are fit to stand alongside those of Osborne, Pogorelich and Argerich. The Tombeau is superbly played, the ornamented musical surface of the opening ‘Prélude’ nicely pointing towards Couperin. The ‘Fugue’ is carefully handled, like a gentle reveal of a porcelain miniature, though such delicacy makes for an almost over-careful ‘Forlane’. The robust ‘Rigaudon’ blasts any such doubts out of the water, and the piece culminates in a superbly articulated, exciting ‘Toccata’. Miroirs underscores Krichel’s natural intelligence: ‘Noctuelles’ is brilliantly delineated, as are the layers of sound in ‘Une barque sur l’océan’. Gaspard is extremely impressive, the clarity Krichel brought to Tombeau once more in evidence in a very different world. ‘Scarbo’ is much more than virtuoso – it is a nightmare vision in sound.

COLIN CLARKE Read the full review on Agora Classica


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