Review CD “Dennoch”

“The “Sieben frühe Lieder” by Alban Berg receive attention mainly in their orchestral version made by Berg himself, while their original version as a piano song cycle is neglected. Yet this piano version – and this is vividly demonstrated by the present recording – is the melodically more insistent, more differentiated and also more appropriate. And it certainly has a more intimate and atmospheric effect when it is interpreted just as simply but not reservedly, just as sensitively but not over-explicitly, as Anne Schwanewilms and Manuel Lange are able to do.

In the same way, they take on the piano song cycle “Dennoch” (Nevertheless), based on seven rhymeless poems by Hilde Domin, composed by Stefan Heucke for Anne Schwanewilms in 2018. (…) Schwanewilms’ bright, evenly timbrated soprano merges, as it were, with the gesture of Heucke’s melodicism, which can emerge all the more forcefully because Manuel Lange gives the piano part harmonically complementary contours. (…) The four Domin poems recited by Wolf-Dieter Rammler very sensibly complement the coherent program and refresh the attention.«

FONO FORUM, Giselher Schubert, May 2023