Tuesday 20 January 2015

Music publishers Edition Peters launch their new record label, Edition Peters Sounds, with surely one of the finest recordings of Faure’s Nocturnes currently available played with great insight by Daniel Grimwood

The world renowned music publishers Edition Peters have just announced the launch of their new record label Edition Peters Sounds www.editionpeters.com/eps

The Edition Peters Sounds label plans to concentrate on recording performances by the artists on its agency roster, as well as releasing works from its artists and others drawn from the Group’s extensive and famous publishing catalogue.

Nicholas Riddle, CEO of the Edition Peters Group said, ‘The creation of a recording label within the Edition Peters Group is an exciting, bold and positive development.  It is not unusual these days for organisations to operate an 'own label', and we do so in order to highlight our artists and publishing catalogue.  Run from our thriving Artist Management company, EPAM, we can all look forward to listening to wonderful performances.’

Edition Peters Sounds is primarily a digital label, but with physical CDs available at its artist’s concerts, from the label’s website and from selected music shops.

The first release, featuring pianist Daniel Grimwood performing Fauré’s Nocturnes, is now available from iTunes, and is available from select CD shops and digital platforms from 10th December 2014.

EPS 001

Future releases will feature tenor Paul Phoenix and vocal ensemble Apollo5 sharing an album of vocal arrangements, violinist Simon Fischer and more.

Daniel Grimwood www.danielgrimwood.co.uk has a repertoire ranging from Elizabethan Virginal music to composers of the modern day and enjoys an international reputation both as a solo and chamber musician. He has performed in many of the world’s most prestigious venues and festivals, including the Wigmore Hall, Queen Elizabeth Hall and the Purcell Room in London, the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester, Symphony Hall Birmingham, the Three Choirs Festival, the Rachmaninoff and Gnessin Halls in Moscow, the Carnegie Hall’s Weill Hall in New York, as well as concert halls in Germany, Austria, Italy, The Netherlands, Slovenia, Estonia, Taiwan, Azerbaijan, Egypt and Lebanon.

His musical interest started as a three year old playing next door’s piano and from the age of seven he was performing in front of audiences. He studied under Graham Fitch at the Purcell School, where he also studied violin, viola and composition and later with Vladimir Ovchinnikov and Peter Feuchtwanger. Although primarily a pianist, he is frequently to be found performing on harpsichord, organ, viola or composing at his desk. Grimwood is a passionate exponent of the early piano, and has given a recital of Chopin’s Etudes on the composer’s own Pleyel piano. As a solo recording artist his growing discography ranges from Scriabin on Somm Recordings to Algernon Ashton on Toccata Classics. His recent discs of Liszt and Chopin, performed on an 1851 Erard piano, received a unanimous chorus of praise from the press.

On this new recording, Daniel Grimwood sets a fine tempo in the Nocturne No. 1 in E-flat Minor, Op. 33, No. 1, full flowing yet with a languid quality before building in strength, finely judged with a real sense of stature as well as some beautifully crystalline playing. Grimwood brings a sense of languor to the opening of the Nocturne No. 2 in B major, Op. 33, No. 2 before some terrific faster passages, full of a lovely ebb and flow and some brilliant playing in the more complex passages showing his superb technique.

Nocturne No. 3 in A-flat major, Op. 33, No. 3 brings a lovely breadth with a fine rubato and beautifully judged tempo with an exquisite coda. Grimwood’s fine phrasing is to the fore in the Nocturne No. 4 in E-flat major, Op. 36 taken at a lovely gentle pace, rising to some impressive passages before the gentle coda.

There is some beautifully silken playing in the gentle rhythms of the Nocturne No. 5 in B-flat major, Op. 37 with more fine phrasing. The central, florid section receives some very fine playing, fluent, with a fine even touch and a lovely sense of continuing forward flow. Grimwood immediately creates a remarkable sound world in the Nocturne No. 6 in D-flat major, Op. 63, a restrained yet subtly coloured performance, conjuring a sense of wonder and restlessness as we are carried through its arch like structure, with this pianist drawing out so many little details and subtleties.

With the Nocturne No. 7 in C-sharp minor, Op. 74 Grimwood brings out so well Fauré’s dark opening before leading us through the tragic and stormy journey of this remarkable Nocturne, revealing so much, so many colours and sonorities, finding so many emotions and revealing fresh insights before culminating in a beautifully limpid coda. The short, fleeting Nocturne No. 8 in D-flat major, Op. 84 is beautifully captured here, beguilingly played.

Grimwood captures the elusive nature of the Nocturne No. 9 in B minor, Op. 97 brilliantly before tackling the more advanced harmonies of the Nocturne No. 10 in E minor, Op. 99 with Grimwood showing complete mastery as he builds the Nocturne, showing just how far Fauré had travelled since his first Nocturne of c.1875. Nocturne No. 11 in F-sharp minor, Op. 104, No. 1 brings a rather withdrawn nature finely captured by Grimwood who builds the music wonderfully to the central climax before falling to the resigned coda.

Grimwood brings much understanding and feeling to the angst ridden rhythms of the Nocturne No. 12 in E minor, Op. 107. Written in 1915 this is surely a reaction to the events of the First World War with its sense of tragedy and foreboding. There is some especially fine playing here, wonderful phrasing and sense of drama. A sense of nostalgia affects the Nocturne No. 13 in B minor, Op. 119 with Grimwood revealing all of its sense of reflection, at times pushing towards a sense of despair. Written in 1921 this was to be his last solo piano work. The music builds in anguish with this pianist finding so much depth.

The opus numbers alone show that Fauré never intended these works as a cohesive whole, yet how well they sit together especially when such a fine pianist as Daniel Grimwood reveals so much. 

This is an extremely satisfying disc and must rate as one of the finest recordings of these works currently available.  A very fine debut disc for Edition Peters Sounds.

Grimwood is finely recorded at Nimbus Studio, Wyastone Estate, Monmouth, UK. The booklet notes are minimal but given that the repertoire is well known this seems to hardly matter.

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