96kHz/24-bit, FLAC*; Sony 19075842152 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)
The piano album seems to be making something of a comeback, and this set by British pianist and composer Alexis Ffrench is his tenth, past outings including Piano Diaries, The Secret Piano and The Piano Whisperer. Classically trained at the Purcell School, the Royal Academy and Guildhall School of Music, Ffrench has produced a series of beautifully played pieces of pianistic persiflage, all pleasant enough but none really signifying very much at all. That said, and despite the mixed formats from which the album’s made up, it’s as lovingly recorded as you could like, including the winsome ‘Bluebird’. It all drifts by innocuously enough, albeit with a feel of something between music for unmade films and dinner-party accompaniment. Not one I suspect most listeners will revisit too often after a first listen, I fear – unless it’s on shuffle repeat in the background. AE
Sound Quality: 85%
Hi-Fi News Lab Report
Tracks 4, 7 and 11 were recorded in 2017, the remainder in 2018. However while this download will light your DAC’s 96kHz LED only tracks 3, 5, 9 and 12 are native. The remainder are 48kHz files upsampled to 96kHz [black trace]. PM
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