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Contemporary Piano Trios from Ireland

Delightful (all composed in the past four years), these piano trios by four leading Irish composers are modern enough in style to provide ever-interesting sounds, but without becoming too challenging - in fact they represent the best contemporary approach to often tuneful and lyrical compositions and in places touches of jazz, and exotic rhythms. Superbly played, as ever, by the astounding Fidelio Trio.




AUDIO SAMPLE: Buckley Trio - 3rd movement (extract)

dealer release date: March 11, 2016





CD program:
John Buckley:
Piano Trio
Fergus Johnston:
Piano Trio
Rhona Clarke:
Piano Trio No. 2
Seóirse Bodley:
Piano Trio 'Dancing in Daylight'

review extracts: for full reviews click here

“The playing of these ‘new' works on this present CD is remarkable, and displays considerable imagination and virtuosity. I enjoyed this record of what I take to be premiere recordings. Each work is characterised by approachability, interest and a deep sense of musicality. One of the best modern chamber music records I have heard in a long time.” - John France (MusicWeb)

“ Works as memorable as they are thoroughly of our times, modern-postmodern, tonal, dramatic and evocative, alive with rhythmic vitality such that one could well imagine dancing to parts of them. Each of the four works has a gem-like brilliance that shines forth. It is a wonderful recital by a trio that breathes together as one, playing music that has both charm and musical significance. It is an exemplary disk. Bravo!” – Grego Edwards (Gapplegate Classical Modern Music)

“This is a terrific disc, and the fact that the composers are all well established means that we have four very different but very mature talents responding to the challenge of writing for the tricky but rewarding combination of piano, violin and cello. The Fidelio Trio are to be commended for their commissioning policy, and the performances they gave on this disc are full of vibrant energy and sympathy with the music.” - Robert Hugill (Planet Hugill)

“These players deliver the most impressive performances of these fine works. The recording is excellent and there are informative booklet notes. This is an attractive release that brings some impressive contemporary piano trios.” - Bruce Reader (The Classical Reviewer)

“These recordings of piano trios by Irish composers are a wonderful surprise: New music from Ireland, which is enjoyable and perfectly interpreted. It is inconsequential to assign this music to genres – composition styles are too different. This is exactly what is appealing when listening to this music. It contains everything, beginning with a reminiscence of Bartók or the impressionists, all the way to hidden or even quite explicit elements of Jazz, the Tango and of course Irish folk music. They are not eclectic emulations, but independent, clever ideas which develop based on traditional styles. Kudos to the musicians of the Fidelio Trio. Their playing is confident, they explore the sound canvas of their instruments, and are technically assured, while the violinist Darragh Morgan also masters the style of an Irish fiddler. The recording is very balanced, every instrument appears present, never does the piano drown out the string instruments .” Interpretation 4/5; sound 4/5; repertoire 5/5; booklet 4/5 – Elisabeth Decker (

“ The Fidelio Trio presents itself as a highly motivated ensemble of great skill. The audio recordings are well balanced and have a natural sound. Anybody liking accessible contemporary music will appreciate thesis recordings. ” - Remy Franck (Pizzicato)

“ Although this is modern music and it does sound “modern” in places it's never challenging. We've listened to this a number of times and it's better on headphones or in a quiet room, the better to appreciate it. It does have a modern feel that reminded us of prog bands such as Rush, who take chances and vary the music.” – Jeremy Condliffe (The Chronicle)

“ None of [the four composers] takes an extreme approach to composition, but there are plenty of stylistic differences to make for an interesting program. It's nice to hear some music by contemporary Irish composers that I wouldn't have heard otherwise.” - George Adams (American Record Guide)

“The four piano trios in this disc have the courage of their convictions ... all four are avowedly trios and none hides behind a so-often modishly lower case name. The quartet of trios also shares a compactness of structure and delineation into conventional movements. Well recorded, the performances are wholly sympathetic to the four composers' idioms.” - Jonathan Woolf (MusicWeb)

“From first note to last in this wholly unexpected but consistently enthralling surprise, [The Fidelio Trio] do themselves, the gifted composers, and the Old Sod very proud.” - Jim Svejda (Fanfare)