The two sonatas and the Concerto date from very different periods in Miaskovsky's long and prolific career, the First Sonata from 1911 (revised in 1930–31), then the Concerto from 1944 and the Second Sonata from 1948: the latter was written for the young Rostropovich. Yet there is little real sense of development in the idiom, since Miaskovsky found himself at home in a late romantic world and never really saw cause or felt impulse to change it, while a real world he did not much care for passed him by. So very much the same qualities of warm, rather melancholy lyricism pervade these three works, not least since the cello seems to have drawn from him music almost entirely in this vein. The voice of Rachmaninov is at the back of the invention, especially of the First Sonata, though there is neither the individuality nor for that matter the fierce demands which Rachmaninov put upon the pianist in his own Cello Sonata.
The performances are sympathetic and make a good case for music which has an easy appeal; the recordings keep a just balance.
Gramophone, December 1994