Mathieu Dupouy, 1791 Gräbner pianoforte
For this second CD of music by C. P. E. Bach, Mathieu Dupouy has chosen two sonatas, three fantasias, and five rondos from the years 1783-87 (the composer died in 1788). I have always had “a thing” for Bach’s keyboard music; as Dupouy’s rather literary booklet notes seek to explain, there is an undeniable ability to suspend time, to linger on an unusual chord, as if the composer is thinking, “which way next?” Even if he goes the way you expect the majority of the time, it is the frisson of excitement on those occasions when he doesn’t that really brings a piece to life, and Dupouy – with an impressive range of touch – exploits those very moments, lingering almost too long… That ability to draw one into a performance (even a recorded one!) is something quite magical. Although Bach was clearly a virtuoso on the instrument, it is the ever-changing proto-Romantic textures that are most interesting here and I wish his music were more widely appreciated – not just on review sites like this one.
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