An adventurous programme draws fine playing from this rising trio

Trio Isimsiz: Brahms, Coll, Korngold


The Strad Issue: February 2024

Description: An adventurous programme draws fine playing from this rising trio

Musicians: Trio Isimsiz

Works: Brahms: Piano Trio no.2. Coll: Piano Trio. Korngold: Piano Trio op.1

Catalogue number: RUBICON RCD107

Trio Isimsiz’s name comes from the Turkish for ‘without name’ or ‘anonymous’, which, on the strength of this third release on Rubicon, underlines that it’s all about the music.

The programming is satisfying in itself, with Korngold – aged just twelve when writing his op.1 Trio – emerging out of the tradition of Brahms. In between, Spanish composer Francisco Coll’s ear-beguiling, starkly inventive Piano Trio bursts in – just as Takemitsu complemented Brahms and Beethoven in Trio Isimisiz’s preceding release.

There are robust strands of youthful joy and Viennese extravagance in the Korngold, the players shifting as one between scampering playfulness and warm lyricism in the middle two movements, always deeply committed but without exaggeration.

In the Brahms, too, the playing is never self-conscious or effortful, but surges freely in the weighty first movement, while the theme of the second-movement variations is one of many instances of the unanimity between violin and cello.

Coll’s Piano Trio takes us to another world, teeming with rhythmic detail that the players duly translate into suppleness, and with seismic dynamic shifts that are absorbed as natural expression. It’s a vivid testament to the group’s considerable individual skills and collective power. The recording gloriously reflects these gifts, placing the players seamlessly in the Britten Studio acoustic, which itself becomes a fourth silent partner.