ASHKENAZY Solo & Chamber Recordings 4832182
. . . a great pianist who showed the rarest balance of sense and sensibility . . . the seriousness of his commitment, his view that the performance of great music is a lifelong spiritual quest requiring constant maintenance, clarification and refinement is surely the kernel of his artistry . . . You only have to hear him in Rachmaninov's 24 Preludes, whether in the dark-hued melancholy of Op 23 No 1 or in his blazing, all-guns-firing bravura in the following B flat Prelude to sense a special poetic affinity . . . Both sets of the "Etudes-tableaux", too, find Ashkenazy at the peak of his quality . . . [the box set includes] a magnificent disc of the "Diabelli" Variations, witty and profound yet always with a sense of music too great to admit impediment . . . There is more, so much more, where, again, Ashkenazy shows his glory; his musical largesse and transparency.