Samuel Barber – Piano Concerto op38 (1. Allegro Appassionato) To test decay
In some ways Keith Jarrett is the perfect pianist to wrangle Samuel Barber’s volatile Piano Concerto op38 – his playing is as strident and stentorian, or as delicately understated, as the piece itself. And there are numerous opportunities during these turbulent 12 minutes for your system to demonstrate its adroitness (or otherwise) when it comes to describing the decay of the copious highfrequency signals bursting from the piece.
Dynamic and explosive
The dynamism of Jarrett’s playing (particularly in the upper registers) is testing enough by itself – his stabs at his instrument’s keyboard shouldn’t overstay their welcome, though neither should they dissipate ahead of time. And that’s before you factor in the treble inputs of an enraged string section, the blaring brass or the explosive percussion punctuation. There are many ways your set-up can be exposed by this piece – but if those short wave-forms are described in full, it’s even easier to be swept away by its potency and power.
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