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Krystian Zimerman Beethoven - Complete Piano Concertos w/LSO, Rattle makes THE WEEK: best albums of 2021

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Krystian Zimerman joined forces with Sir Simon Rattle and the London Symphony Orchestra last December in Beethoven's five piano concertos. Their spellbinding performances, streamed on DG Stage from LSO St Luke's and recorded live by Deutsche Grammophon, harvested a bumper crop of critical superlatives. Here was "history in the making", wrote The Times in its five-star review, while Bachtrack noted, "Purity and clarity are hallmarks of Zimerman's playing and there was an almost aristocratic composure to his phrasing and a velvet touch … Everything was meticulous, not … a quaver out of place."

From tear-jerkers to star-making pop anthems THE WEEK picks ‘Krystian Zimerman Beethoven - Complete Piano Concertos w/LSO, Rattle ’ as The best albums of 2021. Here's the review

The Polish pianist Krystian Zimerman first recorded Beethoven’s concertos in 1989, said Patrick Rucker in Gramophone; fast-forward 32 years and he’s done it again, this time with Simon Rattle and the London Symphony Orchestra as collaborators. In the Complete Piano Concertos, Zimerman displays “an almost impish pleasure in Beethoven’s fecund imagination”, his “rhythmic verve” providing “endless variety”. The pandemic nixed a real celebration of Beethoven’s 250th anniversary. But the release of works such as this wonderful Zimerman/Rattle/LSO collaboration “provides something like compensation”.