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REVIEW from Online Merker

“Rarely does a CD captivate and inspire you, and make you stop to listen, from the opening few seconds. This applies to the new Grigory Sokolov CD and to the CD in question, the complete set of piano trios written by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach. The Linos Piano Trio, with the Thai-British pianist Prach Boondiskulchok, the London-born violinist with German-Brazilian roots Konrad Elias-Trostmann and the equally great cellist Vladimir Waltham are covering new ground/reaching new heights in trio playing. The trio has appropriately adopted the name of the Greek demigod Linos, son of Apollo and brother of Orpheus. These works, which fall in the deceptively unassuming category of ‘house music’ are as outrageous and ground-breaking as the Linos Piano Trio’s interpretation of them on modern instruments. It is a mystery to me how the amateurs at the time were able to tackle pieces as challenging as these back then.

As the pianist Boondiskulchok points out, these works are neither traditional trios in the baroque sense of the trio sonata with two equal instrumental parts and continuo accompaniment, nor solo piano works or solos (solo instrument and continuo). The compositions are nevertheless full of originality and individuality, expressive gestures and – similar to Haydn – surprising dramatic and rebellious twists. One can imagine CPE Bach writing these works, sometimes giggling like a rascal about the tricky “musical pranks”. And, without wanting to stir the pot, perhaps with an undertone of wanting to nudge his slightly more conservative Papa?

The best way to describe the Linos Piano Trio’s performances is to use the English term “thrilling”. They respond to CPE’s musical “jokes” with dramatic phrasing, and an audible joy in following the trails the composer has left in his humorous narrative. The three musicians can, of course, also display earnest courtliness and virtuosity, slipping briefly into understatement when needed, before breaking character, back to CPE’s quirks. An eventful journey!”

– Dr. Ingobert Waltenberger – June 2020

Download booklet sample with complete track listings here.