In their third title, the Smetana Trio presents us with piano trios from the recent chapters of Czech music history. The oldest piece on the album, Zdeněk Fibich's Piano Trio in F minor, was written in 1872 when the composer was just twenty-one years old. This remarkable piece bears witness to Fibich's extraordinary talent and is perhaps the second important piano trio inthe Czech literature after Smetana's Trio in G minor (recorded on SU 3810-2). Following up on their second album, which contains Dvořák's Trios Nos 3 and 4, the ensemble has recordedhis Piano Trio No. 1. This piece, completed only three years after Fibich's, employs a wide range of expressions from fascinating canonic sections to lyrically calm passages to the stirringoptimism of the Finale. The CD closes with the 1950 Piano Trio in D minor, one of the best works of Bohuslav Martinů's later life. It brings his neoclassical period to a close and bears distinctive signs of the synthetic style that characterized the last period of his compositions. This CD promises to be a worthy successor to their previous album (SU 3872-2) which received a number of awards, including the 2007 BBC Music Magazine Award and the Diapason d'Or.
Trio for Piano, Violin and Cello in B flat major, Op. 21 B 51