CHOPIN The Nocturnes / Freire 4782185
. . . his warm-hearted performances eschew a concert-hall brio in favour of intimacy, almost as if played in the privacy of one's own room. Not that he is immune to those sudden flashes of anger never far from Chopin's always volatile nature. He is dramatically alive to the startling end to the Field-like B major Nocturne, Op 32 No 1, with its muffled timpani strokes and a sudden, chilling menace. The posthumous E minor Nocturne, too, . . . emerges pained and drawn, reminding you of Delacroix's celebrated portrait of Chopin. But overall Freire is at his finest in readings which are pensive and conciliatory. He is truly "lento" in the G minor Nocturne with its obsessive questioning and "religioso" conclusion, and time and again he makes you see these works as truly night pieces . . .