This is the sixth and final volume in Barry Douglas’s survey of Brahms’s output for solo piano, which started four years ago. The recital completes a project that over 441 minutes has represented a ‘triumph of Brahmsian thoughts’ and in which ‘every sound is resonantly Brahmsian’. According to BBC Music, ‘Douglas’s tone is a deep velvet cushion, the legatos full of affection and the rhythms galvanised with great energy’.
The music recorded here spans the entirety of the composer’s creative career, from March 1852 (the Study after Weber) – eighteen months before the life-changing meeting between Brahms and Robert and Clara Schumann – to August 1893 (the Intermezzo, Op. 118 No. 6) – less than four years before his death, on 3 April 1897.
The selection of works offered here invites us to consider Brahms under many aspects – arranger, virtuoso, pedagogue, historicist, and above all pianist – which Barry Douglas embraces perfectly.