Tchaikovsky – Songs Vol 2


In the world of chamber music, the genre of the Lied (song) is a very delicate one. One singer and one pianist are facing works that sounds so easy. Yet if you compare the different recordings, differences can be huge. This has to do with the timbre of the voice, but maybe more with technique and the interaction between singer and pianist.

The subject matter of these songs resembles what my grandfather used to say about pop music: meh, it is always about love. Both in the inaccuracy of that statement as in its truth. The songs of the romantic era tell heart wrenching stories, but also can be about a small thing as a children’s toy. No matter the subject matter, it is never without almost exaggerated emotion. And it is that emo character of the genre that makes it so difficult to perform.

This recording is lacking in all of these. In the past I bought a couple of CDs with songs like this, and those are way better. No matter how many accolades Elisabeth Söderström got for her roles on the stages of big opera houses, or for her complete cycle of songs by Rachmaninov, this recording is just not working for me.

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