RACHMANINOV Piano Concertos 1 - 4 / Ashkenazy 4552342

. . . the sound and balance are superb, and there's nothing to cloud your sense of Ashkenazy's greatness in all these works . . . What nobility of feeling and what dark regions of the imagination he relishes and explores in page after page of the Third Concerto . . . His rubato is as natural as it's distinctive, and his way of easing from one idea to another shows him at his most intimately and romantically responsive . . . Such imaginative fervour and delicacy are just as central to Ashkenazy's other performances . . . Previn works hand in glove with his soloist. Clearly, this is no one-night partnership but the product of the greatest musical sympathy. The opening of the Third Concerto's Intermezzo could hardly be given with a more idiomatic, brooding melancholy, a perfect introduction for all that's to follow. If you want playing which captures Rachmaninov's always elusive, opalescent centre then Ashkenazy is hard to beat.