Reference Recording - This one.
"Beethoven polished and refined his first three piano trios to the nth degree before pronouncing them worthy of the honor of Op. 1. The C minor trio is the third and most volatile of the group, and the Abegg Trio relishes its daredevil parameters in a jaw-dropping performance. Pianist Gerrit Zitterbart′s whiplash scale passages and crisply sprung rhythms recall Glenn Gould′s brash vitality, complemented here by violinist Ulrich Beetz′s sweetly acidic expressivity. Cellist Birgit Erichson′s tonal purity and warm, focused sound anchors her partners without inhibiting them. Moving on to Beethoven′s barnstorming middle period, the "Ghost" Trio′s outer movements crackle with drama, while the eerie Largo′s "ghostly" tremolos have more definition and backbone than is usually the case with other performers. These 1986 readings are gorgeously engineered. And I charitably bypass the pretentious booklet notes as I assign my rating for artistic quality. A winner."
Jed Distler

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