Peter Cropper & Martin Roscoe: Beethoven Violin Sonatas

A satisfying snap shot from the first of a planned series.

Composer: Beethoven
Repertoire: Violin Sonatas in D, Op.12/1; in C minor, Op.30/2; in G, Op.96
Artists: Peter Cropper (violin), Martin Roscoe (piano)
Rating: 3/5

Genre: Instrumental
Label: ASV Gold GLD 4023

Although it’s the first release in a planned complete series, this selection also offers a pleasing overview of Beethoven’s chamber-music idiom by itself. The Sonata in D is a brisk, compulsively driven early work that must have thoroughly disconcerted the oh-so-classical age of Haydn and Mozart. The stormy C minor Sonata, with its serene, major-key slow movement, is vintage middle-period Beethoven. And the G major Sonata is a stylish, subtle masterpiece of non-stop invention. Peter Cropper’s playing explores a remarkable spectrum of moods and sounds, from ultra-forthright to beautifully poised. Martin Roscoe’s accompaniments are both immaculate and hyper-alert.