Let me begin by saying that I love the music of Granados. So any recording that does not just consist of the dozen or so pieces for piano that everyone plays and records is an exciting event for me.
Granados was an outstanding pianist and has written some of the most beautiful piano music I know. But this CD contains chamber music(!), his Piano Quintet, Op. 49, Piano Trio, Op. 50, and an arrangement of the Intermezzo from the Opera Goyescas for piano trio by Gaspar Cassado, a star pupil of Pablo Casals.
The Trio is a beautifully sunny work evoking a lovely, tranquil day on a patio in Barcelona, the kind of day in which nothing is pressing and the delicious wines of the area can be savored at leisure.
The Quintet is somewhat more deliberate, which I suppose is inevitable in a work for five performers, but still has that relaxed quality about it that just makes one want to bask in its joyful impetuosity. The slow movement recalls to mind de Falla's Nights in the Gardens of Spain, but is a garden in the waning hours of a golden afternoon.
The Goyescas Intermezzo was written in one night just before the premiere of the opera in New York and has an improvised quality about it, especially in this charming arrangement.
This graceful and spontaneous music is exactly the kind of music that one would like to play with a few good friends, without haste, and without a care in the world. This is the music of a happy man, perhaps one recently married with thoughts of a joyous life to come dancing in his head. And it is catching.
Performances by the LOM Trio (Daniel Ligorio piano, Joan Orpella violin, and Jose Mor cello) capture the mood and the essence of the music to perfection. The LOM Trio is joined by violinist Manuel Porta Gallego and violist Joaquin Riquelme Garcia in the quintet.
If you like Granados in particular, or if you just like chamber music in general, you must own this disc. It is a delight.