Hyperion Records

Clarinet Sonata in E flat major, Op 120 No 2
composer
Summer 1894; first performed by Richard Mühlfeld and Brahms in Berchtesgaden, Meiningen, on 19 September 1894; also for viola and piano

Recordings
'Brahms: Clarinet Sonatas' (CDH55158)
Brahms: Clarinet Sonatas
MP3 £4.99FLAC £4.99ALAC £4.99Buy by post £5.50 CDH55158  Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Last few CD copies remaining  
'Brahms: The Complete Chamber Music' (CDS44331/42)
Brahms: The Complete Chamber Music
MP3 £35.00FLAC £35.00ALAC £35.00Buy by post £40.00 CDS44331/42  12CDs Boxed set (at a special price)  
Details
Movement 1: Allegro amabile
Track 5 on CDH55158 [8'05] Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Last few CD copies remaining
Track 8 on CDS44331/42 CD10 [8'05] 12CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 2: Allegro appassionato
Track 6 on CDH55158 [5'12] Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Last few CD copies remaining
Track 9 on CDS44331/42 CD10 [5'12] 12CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
Movement 3: Andante con moto – Allegro non troppo
Track 7 on CDH55158 [7'24] Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Last few CD copies remaining
Track 10 on CDS44331/42 CD10 [7'24] 12CDs Boxed set (at a special price)

Clarinet Sonata in E flat major, Op 120 No 2
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This music is less overtly determined than its companion, but no less terse in fact. The main theme stretches itself comfortably and does not eschew repetition like the one in the F minor sonata; it is also more persistent in the movement as a whole, especially its opening phrase. The development uses quick arpeggiated triplets that may remind the ear of Beethoven’s first Rasumovsky Quartet or of his Triple Concerto (the first movement in each) – Brahms was in any case so fond of this sort of locomotion that it by now had become purely characteristic of himself.

The other two movements are markedly contrasted with each other. The scherzo, Allegro appassionato, is in E flat minor and begins in a flowing vein that at first seems to follow easily what has gone before – but it becomes intense and full of measured energy, and there is a trio in B major, one of Brahms’s most splendid melodies. In the third movement, Andante con moto, he relaxes into five variations and coda on a beautiful theme that shows no inclination to activity until a stormy variation interrupts in E flat minor. But the sun soon comes out again, and the sonata ends happily, as it began.

from notes by Robert Simpson © 1986

Track-specific metadata
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Details for CDS44331/42 disc 10 track 10
Andante con moto – Allegro non troppo
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-86-20207
Duration
7'24
Recording date
19 September 1984
Recording venue
St Barnabas's Church, North Finchley, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Martin Compton
Recording engineer
Mike Clements
Hyperion usage
  1. Brahms: Clarinet Sonatas (CDA66202)
    Disc 1 Track 7
    Release date: April 1987
    Deletion date: February 2004
    Superseded by CDH55158
  2. Brahms: Clarinet Sonatas (CDH55158)
    Disc 1 Track 7
    Release date: February 2004
    Helios (Hyperion's budget label) — Last few CD copies remaining
  3. Brahms: The Complete Chamber Music (CDS44331/42)
    Disc 10 Track 10
    Release date: October 2008
    12CDs Boxed set (at a special price)
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