Fanfare

Szymanowski strives for a Wagnerian amplitude of texture, surging relentlessly across the keyboard … The levitation of such a rich – superrich – art requires nothing less than a pianistic superman. While Raymond Clarke’s debut recording of Ronald Stevenson’s epic Passacaglia on DSCH (a virtual compendium of the pianist’s art…) and subsequent triumphant tilts at the exotic demands of Messiaen, Boulez, and Tippett, were ample demonstration of the requisite Übermenschlichkeit, it is still amazing to hear – and even more to follow in score – the impetuous fluent poetry with which he spirits up, shapes, and points with piquantly phrased melodiousness these great billowing waves … Clarke also writes very well, and his richly informed notes add a signal amenity to this highly desirable disc. Sound is transparently immediate in a spacial aural frame. Enthusiastically recommended

—Adrian Corleonis