[ Sony Classical / CD ]
Release Date: Monday 2 May 2011
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Baritone Christian Gerhaher has already set new standards with his interpretations of the most famous romantic song cycles. On his new album he turns his attention to Hugo Wolf's "Italian Songbook" together with the young German soprano Mojca Erdmann. They are accompanied on the piano by Gerhaher's long-term musical partner Gerold Huber.
"Erdmann's light, bright soprano is the right voice for the flirtatious coquettes represented in the female songs...The swains of Gerhaher...meanwhile, languish, despair and rage with a confessional soul-baring...Is there a Lieder singer blessed with a more beautiful voice, greater musical intelligence and communicative power before the public today? I don't think so. Gerhaher and Huber give us Wolf for the ages." Sunday Times, 8th May 2011 ****
"While Mojca Erdmann seems a decent enough lieder singer, with a bright, silvery timbre and an even, clean delivery, Christian Gerhaher is already an authentically great one; he invests every phrase with specific meaning, employing a huge range of colours and nuances to tease out the emotional currents that surge beneath the apparently innocent surfaces of these songs and their accompaniments." The Guardian, 19th May 2011 ***
"The tonal freshness, and emotional freedom commanded by the great German baritone Christian Gerhaher is showcased in this performance of Wolf's 46 miniatures: sample his exquisite singing of Dass doch gemalt to hear him at his peak. His soprano partner Mojca Erdmann isn't quite on this level, but her singing has winning charm and purity." The Telegraph, 23rd June 2011 ****
"Gerhaher and Erdmann complement each other, she offering coy charm against his mystic romanticism. With Huber on piano, both singers conjure the sense of weightlessness that is a feature of these songs - though it is Gerhaher's eloquence that provides the stand-out moments on an outstanding disc." Financial Times, 25th June 2011 *****
"Christian Gerhaher's baritone is one of the wonders of our generation, while Mojca Erdmann's visionary, shining soprano complements him perfectly. At the piano, Gerold Huber characterises each piercing, tiny vision unerringly. Outstanding, but strangely disturbing." The Observer, 26th June 2011
"Gerhaher is an ideal exponent of these charming little songs. His voice is rich, even and smooth; his delivery clear; and his sense of engagement total." Classic FM Magazine, August 2011 ***
"[Erdmann's] voice is lustrous and beautifully integrated throught its registers...Gerhaher, now in his prime, is a delight throughout: robust in ardent adoration, nuancing his voice for the vignettes of lunar beauty, and darkening it for the moments of passing anger and frustration...[his] regular accompanist, Gerold Huber, enlivens every miniature tableau with vivid piano playing" BBC Music Magazine, August 2011 ****