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Busoni Elegies & Liszt Sonata

David Wilde (piano)

Delphian DCD34030 [78 mins]

Sometimes a good old one gives more pleasure than a brilliant youngster. David Wilde's Busoni & Liszt is such.

Others will have their favourite Liszt sonata performances, but there is no doubting the intensity of conviction and pianistic security Wilde at 70 brings to it. Visiting Professor of Keyboard at Edinburgh University, he continues to play, write, compose and teach. I don't much like his recorded sound at the Reid Hall there, but you quickly get used to it. Nor is the Liszt a work I look forward to hearing again, but Wilde grabs you and holds you to the end.

What makes this CD an essential recommendation for the smallish but devoted band of Busoni fans is Wilde's totally absorbing account of the infrequently played Elegies of 1907. No one else has harmonies and turns of phrase like his, with "memories of Berlioz, Liszt and Brahms subsumed into a dark, wholly personal idiom" ( Bryce Morrison), whose appreciation of Wilde's "rare communicative vividness and force" from Bryce Morrison - no-one knows more about piano playing - are confirmed immediately one puts the disc on.

Peter Grahame Woolf

Hear David Wilde also in Dallapiccola Portrait (also Delphian)