MATTHIAS GOERNE / Beethoven, Schubert 4756011

There is no surprise that these two thoughtful artists should produce powerful performances of the most inward-looking Heine songs . . . In its beauty, their shared phrasing springs from an understanding of the meaning of each poem, so that the lighter ones are scarcely less affecting . . . Their mutual understanding completely solves such a difficult song as "Kriegers Ahnung". And the Beethoven cycle moves in a steady progress not into the usual triumphant assertion but into a warmth of belief that song may truly join the parted lovers . . . [these are but a few] of the riches to be found in what is music-making of genius.

Goerne and Brendel form one of the great Lieder partnerships of the day. The sympathy between them goes beyond skilful ensemble and shared enjoyment of the wealth of illustration in Schubert, into a deep understanding of the poetry as he composed it. It's no surprise that they should produce powerful performances of the most inward-looking Heine songs -- the suffering power of "Der Atlas", the misery from which the harmony allows no escape in "Die Stadt", the terror of "Der Doppelgänger". But the lighter ones are scarcely less affecting. And their mutual understanding completely solves such a difficult song as "Kriegers Ahnung" . . . This is music-making of genius.