Brahms Rediscovered features two works: a String Quintet in F minor transcribed from Brahms' piano quintet by Sebastian Brown and a Piano Trio in A major by an unknown composer who may very well have been Brahms. The quintet takes as its raison d'être the fact Brahms originally executed the F minor work as a string quintet before transforming it into first a sonata for two pianos and then a piano quintet.
The trio takes as its justification its similarities in form and content to early works by Brahms and the fact that the name of the actual composer remains unknown. Whether or not it succeeds in convincing the listener depends in part on the quality of the works and in part on the quality of the performances.Played here by the English-Russian Amati Chamber Players, Brown's transcription of Brahms' quintet sounds leaner and more sinewy than the original with more of an edge to its sonorities and more homogeneity to its textures, while the unknown composer's trio sounds so much like Brahms in theme, tone, and development that it is difficult not attribute it to him. As performances, though one might wish the violinists were more in tune in the quintet and the whole ensemble were tighter in the trio, one cannot deny that the musicians do a more than acceptable job of making the case for the music being by Brahms. Deeply devoted fans of the composer will have to hear this disc, but listeners who do not already know Brahms' Piano Quintet or his canonical piano trios are directed to those works instead. Biddulph's digital sound is a bit too close and a shade too sharp.
|String Quintet in F minor (reconstruction of original version of Op. 34)|
|Allegro non troppo||Amati Chamber Ensemble||12:56|
|Andante, un poco Adagio||Amati Chamber Ensemble||10:09|
|Scherzo: Allegro||Amati Chamber Ensemble||7:57|
|Finale: Poco sostenuto - Allegro non troppo||Amati Chamber Ensemble||11:38|
|Piano Trio No. 4 in A major, Anh. 4/5 (spurious?)|
|Moderato||Amati Chamber Ensemble||10:22|
|Scherzo: Vivace||Amati Chamber Ensemble||6:55|
|Lento||Amati Chamber Ensemble||10:54|
|Presto||Amati Chamber Ensemble||8:41|