Album: Schubert, Winterreise – Harvey / Cooper (Linn)

We have come to associate period instruments with lightness, but what starts as attractive transparency in Peter Harvey and Gary Cooper's Winterreise slowly tightens into neurotic abstraction.

Cooper plays on David Winston's copy of an 1823 Brodmann, with a tone that liquefies or brightens eerily, cimbalom-like in the twisting drone of "Der Leiermann". Harvey's singing is all on the text, biting or stroking the consonants, at times harsh, at times whispering, his high baritone cool and easy.