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This disc draws together some lesser-known works by three of the twentieth century' greatest composers. Ravel' Violin Sonata in G major was his final chamber work, combining the influence of blues with an austere beauty. The dramatic Violin Sonata in B
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The Respighi Violin Sonata, from 1917, is, for all Respighi's fascination with medieval and renaissance music, a deeply romantic work. In some ways it reminds me of Richard Strauss's violin sonata, and indeed it has been coupled with that work on a recording by Kyung Wha Chung and Kristian Zimerman Strauss: Sonata For Violin and Piano in E flat major, Op. 18 / Respighi: Sonata For Violin and Piano in B minor, P. 110 which I have not heard. It is in the three movements with a songful andante middle movement and a striking passacaglia finale. The movement's final moments call for some real fireworks, especially from the pianist, and van Bueren and Saeijs do not let us down.
The Granados Sonata is in one movement and lasts only eleven minutes. It is, for me, the weakest selection here. It tends to meander, sounding new-agey noodling in spots, and alas there is little of Granados's typical Spanish flavor. I don't know that it has ever been recorded before. I've certainly never run across it until now. After listening to it three times I can fairly say that it never did grab me. My idiosyncratic tastes, I'm sure.