A fabulous Chamber Music recital from Emanuel Feuermann
"Feuermann is in the front rank of 'cellists ... his playing is magnificent" - The Gramophone
The sources for the transfers were all American Columbia pressings – “Full-Range” label copies for the Beethoven and Schubert; a large label, post-“Viva-Tonal” set for the Brahms; and a “Gold Microphone” label edition for the Reger.
BEETHOVEN Cello Sonata No. 3 in A major, Op. 69
Recorded 28/29 June 1937 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 3, London
Matrices: CAX 8004-8 (all Take 1)
First issued on Columbia LX 641-43
Myra Hess piano
SCHUBERT Arpeggione Sonata in A minor, D.821
Recorded 29/30 June 1937 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 3, London
Matrices: CAX 8009-13 (all Take 1)
First issued on Columbia LX 717-19
Gerald Moore piano
BRAHMS Cello Sonata No. 1 in E minor, Op. 38
Recorded 10/11 July 1934 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 3, London
Matrices: CAX 7211-1, 7212-1, 7213-2, 7214-2 and 7215-1
First issued on Columbia LX 404-06
Theo van der Pas piano
REGER Suite for Unaccompanied Cello in G Major, Op. 131c, No. 1
Recorded 7 February 1939 in EMI Abbey Road Studio No. 3, London
Matrices: CAX 8439-42 (all Take 1)
First issued on Columbia LX 817-18
Emanuel Feuermann cello
Gramophone Historic Review
BRAHMS Cello Sonata
The ’cello is really a short-length solo instrument, lacking sufficient suppleness and variety of tone for longer courses, but in this sonata Brahms has exploited the range and personality of the instrument with such resource that one is never overcome by the feeling of monotony that is the danger of its rich tones.
Perhaps I may refer readers to an analysis of the music that I did for the “Brahms” volume in the “Golden Treasury of Recorded Music” Series (II.M.V., 1s.) and proceed to discuss the performance.
Feuermann is in the front rank of 'cellists and it goes without saying that his playing is magnificent. He is at his best in the last movement—one of great force and brilliance. I should have liked a sharper differentiation of tone for the second subject of the first movement—it is too much of a piece with what has gone before—and the charming scherzo (in the style of a minuet) should surely have been given, by both artists, much more lightly and whimsically; the Trio especially. For this movement (the second) I prefer Beatrice Harrison's recording.
If only the balance had been as good as in the “Kreutzer” discs of last month! Unfortunately, the pianist, whose playing is clearly excellent, sounds too distant and as if his instrument had a very feeble bass.
With this reservation the recording is very good, the deep notes of the ’cello coming out extraordinarily well.
A.R., The Gramophone, October 1935