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Classical Album of the Week: French Moments with the Neave Trio

July 23, 2018.  A marvelous disc of music by three French composers makes up a new release by the Neave Trio.  On French Moments the chamber ensemble performs three trios: one each, by Debussy, Fauré and Roussel.  In fact,  the CD contains the only piano trios by these composers.

French Moments is music that may even be new to you.  The Roussel composition hasn’t been recorded much over the years. It’s just the second composition completed by Roussel that was ever published, and is definitely worth hearing.  

The works by Debussy and Fauré cover more familiar musical territory.  The early trio by Debussy dates from his 18th year, when he was staying with Tchaikovsky’s benefactor, Nadezhda von Meck.

The score in Debussy’s own hand was lost, but rediscovered and finally published in 1982.  While it doesn’t give much of a hint about what’s coming in Debussy’s later works, it’s still an enjoyable listen.

Fauré’s music is probably the best-known of the pieces on the album.  Written at a time in the composer’s life when he was completely deaf, it was among his final compositions.

French Moments captures the spirit these three French composers imbued in their music, and is a great follow up to the Neave Trio’s previous recording of American composers.