This is a magnificent and important set.
Notwithstanding the current revival of interest in Medtner (in which Hyperion has played no small part) the complete Skazki have never been recorded together, and some of the pieces here are receiving their long overdue first recordings. The Skazki (‘Märchen’ in German; ‘Contes’ in French; the incorrect ‘Fairy Tales’ in English) were the most personal of Medtner’s idioms and contain his most immediately appealing music: they are miniature tone poems full of atmosphere and colour and are arguably the most neglected ‘great’ piano music in the repertoire.
Medtner has been central to Hamish Milne’s repertoire since the 1970s—he has already recorded eight CDs of the composer’s music—and no one has a finer grasp of the subtle sound world of these works. Hamish has here surpassed himself in a recording which is also graced with superlative piano sound. These CDs are sure to be regarded as definitive for many years to come.