Beethoven: Piano Trio No. 1 & Mendelssohn: Piano Trio No. 2
Formed in 2016, Tokyo’s Aoi Trio scored an early major triumph by winning the prestigious ARD International Music Competition two years later. After an album of Haydn and Schubert, they again pair trios by two masters in the genre, Beethoven and Mendelssohn. Immediately striking is their perfect judgement of internal balance: Never once does the elegant pianism of Kosuke Akimoto threaten to dominate. Beethoven’s Piano Trio No. 1 is beautifully characterised with sparkle and joy, while Mendelssohn’s Piano Trio No. 2 seethes with its burgeoning Romanticism. A fine album.