ALBUM TITLE: Franck,D’haene,Ysaÿe
WORKS: Violin Sonata6 Solo Violin Sonatas, Op. 27
PERFORMER: Yossif Ivanov (violin), Daniel Blumenthal (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: AMB 102
This debut disc from the young Belgian violinist Yossif Ivanov is centred upon the music of his homeland. It places two Ysaÿe sonatas for solo violin alongside Franck’s much-loved Sonata, with Rafael D’Haene’s recent Sonata completing a thoughtful and inventive programme. These are living, breathing performances (with plenty of sniffs to reinforce the point). The Franck is characterised by fire behind the plentiful moments of sweetness and light. For once, the piano introduction is the same speed as the first violin entry, and there is very much a sense of partnership between Ivanov and Daniel Blumenthal. Although there is a good sense of direction, it would help at times if, like Kyung Wha Chung’s classic version (Decca), there was a dash more ebb with the flow. There are also places where, presumably to provide an extra bit of grit for the oyster, Ivanov appears to attack the violin with buzz saw rather than bow; but what works in concert can seem histrionic captured in fine sound. The evocation of ‘Dawn’ at the start of Ysaÿe’s Fifth Sonata is remarkably modern in Ivanov’s hands, and, while the ensuing ‘Danse rustique’ does not take wing like Thomas Zehetmair’s peerless accounts (ECM), there is plenty of bravura in the Sixth Sonata. Ivanov gave the premiere of D’Haene’s Sonata, and it would be hard to find a more committed advocate. Like the Franck, it is closely constructed, but differs in that the principal motif has been heard more than enough long well before the end.