This is a quite superb CD, and one that I simply couldn’t put down. The playing is absolutely first class, not only in terms of technique, and Vlaeva consummately brings great power to the table when called for, while still ready to produce the most delicate pianissimo when needed. Furthermore, she shows a total empathy for the style, and plays in the grand romantic tradition for which this music absolutely cries out.
If you’ve not heard any Bortkiewicz yet, then this stunning new release crystallises everything on a single generous CD. It's impeccably recorded in the best Hyperion manner, and virtually guaranteed to make you want to delve further. Perhaps it will also lead you to the Piano Concerto No 1, in the same way that I have now made the journey, but from the other direction.