Like Chopin himself, Hough is an opera lover, and he recognises that the composer’s Nocturnes are bel canto arias without words. Like a great singer, Hough 'breathes' Chopin’s Belliniesque melodies with the long phrasing beloved of Wagner, yet he avoids any hint of 'Bellini-of-the-Piano' cliché (a frequent 19th-century putdown). Indeed his lightness of touch, perfectly controlled rubato, and 'endless cantilena' has an improvisatory quality recalling the art of the divas Chopin heard in the theatre. A selection of posthumous Nocturnes (including one of his last compositions, the isolated Op 72 No 1), questionable misattributions, and a later version of Op 9 No 2, with Chopin’s own 'coloratura' embellishments, are substantial bonuses. Hough at his most personal and best.