TAS Super LP List! Special Merit: Classical
Analog Planet Rated 10/10 Music, 10/10 Sonics!
TAS Rated 4/5 Music, 5/5 Sonics in the March 2021 Issue of The Absolute Sound!
Happy 250th Birthday Beethoven! Your music sounds fresh, exciting and inspiring as it must have when you were alive and writing it in your young prime. Amazing to have created this magnificent trio when you were only 27 years old.
Beethoven's Trios -- he wrote four in all -- are early works, but already in the C Minor work on this LP the tread of the dramatic master is apparent. Just the opening, a dark, menacing melody that shows up again in the great Opus 131 Quartet of many years later, tells us that. C Minor was Beethoven's most dramatic tonality throughout his lifetime; even though this early trio tends to slither into happier C Major tones rather readily, the dark shadows are never completely out of earshot. - Alan Rich
Janaki String Trio "won the Coleman Chamber Music Competition and the Concert Artists Guild International Competition." And writing about Janaki's Carnegie debut, Allan Kozinn wrote the Janaki musicians were "fresh and energetic in Beethoven's Trio." - Allan Kozinn, New York Times
This music sounds fresh and energizing just as it must have for Beethoven and his first lucky audiences.
"One of the most delightful aspects of this album is the supremely self-assured emplacement of the violin, viola and cello in their respective positions in the soundstage. You might think that Yarlung's employment of a single AKG C-24 tube stereo microphone would render it difficult to follow each separate instrument as it coheres into an ensemble, but nothing of the kind occurs. There is no smearing, no blurring, no nothing to interfere with your enjoyment of the music. Arnold Choi's impassioned cello playing comes through splendidly and Serena McKinney's violin work is nuanced and absorbing, not to mention the viola playing of Karie Kadarauch which is enticingly resonant. This crack ensemble was in its matutinal hours during this performance, but it remains a treat to listen to this recording. Yarlung, you could even say, with this LP has hit a hole in one." - Ty Webb, Analog Planet, Music 10/10, Sound 10/10
Even Beethoven, who liked to take occasional shots at the performers of his works by noting that they were mere drones expressing his genius, might have been impressed by the rich and warm and transparent sound of this album, one that is pretty much guaranteed to satisfy all but the most curmudgeonly of listeners. To paraphrase the venerable Dr. Johnson, if you're tired of this music, then you're tired of life.
The impressively natural miking picks up the instruments' resonance and overtones but misses most extraneous noises. The LP has more warmth and hall richness than the hi-res, putting you right in the first row rather than at a remove. Beethoven was known for setting some of his most dramatic works in C minor: this trio joins the Pathetique Sonata, the Coriolan Overture, the Fifth Symphony, and the final piano sonata in that world. Three instruments rather than a full string quartet, however, means turbulent emotions are balanced by transparent textures in a delectable tension. Also, the piece stands at the crossroads of the Classical and Romantic eras, its thunder countered by wit and laughter. The Janaki Trio conveys all this in a vivid, pulsating performance.
- 180g Vinyl
- Recorded in Zipper Hall at Colburn School, February 2006
- Mastering Engineers: Steve Hoffman & Bob Attiyeh
- 45rpm vinyl mastering by Bernie Grundman
- Made in Germany
Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1827)
String Trio in C Minor Opus 9, No. 3
- I. Allegro con spirito
- II. Adagio con espressione
- III. Scherzo - Allegro molto e vivace
- IV. Finale - Presto