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April 13, 2018
Le Devoir

By: Christophe Huss

(Translated from French)

The first appearance of Blake Pouliot at the OSM, which he won the competition in 2016, had literally knocked us over. In our review, we attributed to him "the caliber of a potential dolphin in the making of James Ehnes". This analogy resurfaced when listening to his first record. Also amusing to re-read the following sentence: "To pass from the admirable to the stunning, it still lacks in my ears a little something that I am hard to define."

At the concert I talked about high harmonics in the sound. On record, I would say that it is very close to what we heard sometimes from James Ehnes: a straightness, a finish, a formidable class, but never unbuttoned or scoundrels (first movement of Ravel). Blake Pouliot, "ideal son-in-law" of the violin, succeeds in a first CD of extreme refinement with nuances that leave you speechless. It is a shame that only Ravel's Gypsy and Debussy's Beau soir are increasing the timing, as a 45-minute CD may not attract more attention elsewhere than here.

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