As with comments by other members, I too dislike the contemporary practice of playing in general much too fast, both fast and slow movements. I am sensitive to this because when I was young I used to play very fast - because I could - and eventually many people criticised it so eventually I got the message and slowed down. Nowadays I revel in the sumptuous sonic colour of the harpsichord rather than dazzling velocity. Perhaps this wisdom comes with age? I’m not sure.
I don’t believe recording duration limitations have influenced this as people did not speed up to fit things on 78s, to minimise the number of heavy records in a classical box. And for CD’s, well, just record a program that fits, or make a double CD set. If this idea was correct then now that CDs are considered obsolete and most artists have moved to streaming services and youtube where there are now no restricted time limits then there would be a general trend to slowing down again, which the experimental evidence does not confirm.
I think it’s just the frantic, accelerated pace of contemporary life, where everyone is busy all the time, and people have forgotten how to relax and savour music in the desperate struggle for work and position and fame and so on. It’s a type of malady. Sometimes at concerts I wonder why people play so fast. It seems they want to hurry to the after-party or the pub.
Now, there’s Blandine Rannou. She is the opposite of this madness. Her Rameau recordings are so slow that it is quite a shock to the system. Perhaps she has gone to the other extreme in a reactionary fashion.