Alessio Bax (piano)
There's some really fine playing in this collection ? Bax's masterful technique serves an intensely musical intuition ? but somehow it fails to take flight. The fireworks of the Opus 23 Preludes never quite dazzle enough and the lesser Melodies feel almost insipid ? until we arrive at Bax's own transcription of the dreamy Vocalise. He writes in the sleeve notes of a long-held desire to record Rachmaninov and here you feel he totally understands the composer's unique harmonic world. It's worth acquiring the CD for this track alone.