American Record Guide

This collection is titled “Romantic Piano Trios”, but it might be better described as post-romantic, since these works were all composed in the early 20th Century. None is terribly dissonant, but they do reflect some of the modernistic trends of that time.

Hurlstone’s trio, in its texture and use of distant key relationships, suggest Brahms; and Miriam Hyde’s Fantasy Trio hints at Faure. Max d’Ollone’s Trio, while harmonically conservative for its time, is texturally and melodically inventive. According to the notes, he was influenced by Wagner, but this piece sounds more like impressionism to me. Dag Wiren’s Trio resembles Prokofieff and includes many lovely moments, most notably a brief but charming Fughetta and an exhilarating Finale.

The renditions are very good, but not quite perfect; a few flaws can be heard in the most demanding string passages. The tone is exce­lent, however, and the interpretations bring out the freshness of the works. I am pleased that this ensemble chose to release a fine recording of neglected works rather than another average recording of familiar ones.

—Greg Pagel