Author Topic: Shostakovich String Quartets  (Read 66648 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline quintett op.57

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 465
Shostakovich String Quartets
« on: May 13, 2007, 10:23:17 AM »
I need to buy a complete box set for a friend's birthday.
String quartet is his favourite genre but he doesn't very well XXth century composers.

Your recommandations?

George

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #1 on: May 13, 2007, 10:24:53 AM »
I need to buy a complete box set for a friend's birthday.
String quartet is his favourite genre but he doesn't very well XXth century composers.

Your recommandations?

Danel (complete)

or

Borodin (1-13) on Chandos

Offline quintett op.57

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 465
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #2 on: May 13, 2007, 10:27:06 AM »
Borodin (1-13) on Chandos
I was thinking about this one, I have 5 Shosta's quartets by them and they're all fine.
thank you

George

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #3 on: May 13, 2007, 10:28:13 AM »
I was thinking about this one, I have 5 Shosta's quartets by them and they're all fine.

Just be aware that they have had personnel changes over the years. I prefer the older lineup on Chandos.

Don

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #4 on: May 13, 2007, 10:30:30 AM »
George's recommendation for the Danel sounds appropriate, especially if your friend isn't into the angst of these works.  The Rasumovsky cycle on Oehms would also fit into the "kinder" category occupied by the Danel.

George

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #5 on: May 13, 2007, 10:31:19 AM »
I was thinking about this one, I have 5 Shosta's quartets by them and they're all fine.
thank you

No problem.  :)

Offline Valentino

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 1119
  • JB rünnhilde
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #6 on: May 13, 2007, 10:36:19 AM »
I'm very happy with my Emerson box set, but it's the only one I've heard, so take that into consideration.

What I can say is that I sometimes find the Emersons a bit on the slick side in Haydn, but in Shostakovich I don't get that impression at all. Just great live music making.

If you go for Emerson you might as well try to get hold of the half price reissue that was released for the 100th anniversary: http://www.mdt.co.uk/MDTSite/product//4757407.htm. It seems like DG is reverting the set to full price again.
We audiophiles don't really like music, but we sure love the sound it makes

SimonGodders

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #7 on: May 13, 2007, 10:42:34 AM »
Danel (complete)

or

Borodin (1-13) on Chandos

Nice ;)

George's recommendation for the Danel sounds appropriate, especially if your friend isn't into the angst of these works.  The Rasumovsky cycle on Oehms would also fit into the "kinder" category occupied by the Danel.

Would agree, The Danel are superbly recorded and a great ensemble, but do fall short in the pathos dept. Particularly in comparison to the Borodins who can be ferocious in these works but they contrast nicely.

Have been acquiring the Beethoven Quartet on Melodiya and can confirm they are very deep, penetrating performances that do inject the right amount of pathos. Sound isn't amazing but quite servicable.

There's so much competition in this arena though; Emerson Qt, Shostakovich Qt, Brodsky Qt, Rubio Qt, Eder Qt, St. Petersburg Qt, Taneyev Qt...The list goes on

Offline Todd

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 13617
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #8 on: May 13, 2007, 11:02:51 AM »
The Borodin's complete cycle has been reissued in Europe, and is a fine first choice.  The Danel and Emerson make fine alternatives, though my overall opinion of the latter in this repertoire has diminished somewhat after hearing them play the first nine in concert.  Hopefully the last six will be better.  (The tickets to those concerts arrived yesterday.) 
The universe is change; life is opinion.   Marcus Aurelius, Meditations

Offline SonicMan46

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 11737
  • Location: North Carolina
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #9 on: May 13, 2007, 11:26:42 AM »
Nice ;)

Would agree, The Danel are superbly recorded and a great ensemble, but do fall short in the pathos dept. Particularly in comparison to the Borodins who can be ferocious in these works but they contrast nicely.

Have been acquiring the Beethoven Quartet on Melodiya and can confirm they are very deep, penetrating performances that do inject the right amount of pathos. Sound isn't amazing but quite servicable.

There's so much competition in this arena though; Emerson Qt, Shostakovich Qt, Brodsky Qt, Rubio Qt, Eder Qt, St. Petersburg Qt, Taneyev Qt...The list goes on


The only 'complete cycle' that I have is that of the Shostakovich Quartet mentioned above on Regis - not sure if the set is still available (packaged as 5 CDs in 3 jewel boxes) - also have the Borodin SQ in 5 of these works, and wanted a second box, so was contemplating just buying this group's complete cycle (the issue that George raised concerning personnel changes is an important consideration) - will be interested to see what others have prefer in this repertoire.  :)


SimonGodders

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #10 on: May 13, 2007, 11:33:19 AM »
Yes, definitely available, seen it around. What are your impressions of the set?

Offline orbital

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 2469
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #11 on: May 13, 2007, 11:34:58 AM »
will be interested to see what others have prefer in this repertoire.  :)


The Fitzwilliams. That's my only set so I can't make any comparisons though. The price was neat when I got them  :)

Offline Sergeant Rock

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 20864
  • Location: Wine Country Germany
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #12 on: May 13, 2007, 11:54:34 AM »
How much do you want to spend? The Rubio's cycle on Brilliant is quite good, and quite cheap. I love the Fitzwilliam and the old Borodin but there is a real possibility the Shostakovich is going to be my preferred set eventually (I've only heard a few quartets so far but was blown away).

Sarge
« Last Edit: May 13, 2007, 11:57:01 AM by Sergeant Rock »
the phone rings and somebody says,
"hey, they made a movie about
Mahler, you ought to go see it.
he was as f*cked-up as you are."
                               --Charles Bukowski, "Mahler"

BorisG

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #13 on: May 13, 2007, 02:10:16 PM »
I need to buy a complete box set for a friend's birthday.
String quartet is his favourite genre but he doesn't very well XXth century composers.

Your recommandations?

Fitzwilliam or Shostakovich.

Offline SonicMan46

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • *
  • Posts: 11737
  • Location: North Carolina
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #14 on: May 13, 2007, 02:44:37 PM »
Fitzwilliam or Shostakovich.

Well, just listened to the first 2 discs of the Shostakovich SQ cycle - really excellent & a keeper for me!

I was planning on adding the Borodin SQ set, but the Fitzwilliam SQ seems to be 'emerging' as a favorite - hmmm, will be interested in further comments -  8)

All of these are 'older' recordings (e.g. Shostakovich SQ recordings are from late '70s into mid-80s) - are the more 'recent' offerings, such as the Emersons even in the competition?  :)


Offline Tyson

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 100
  • [Music] washes away the dust of everyday life.
  • Location: Denver, Colorado
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #15 on: May 13, 2007, 04:39:46 PM »
Borodin, not just for the pathos they have, but also for the outright weirdness that they find in Shosty's soundworld.  Sort of like a circus inside and insane asylum.
At a loss for words.

Offline Dancing Divertimentian

  • Veteran member
  • *
  • Posts: 5738
  • Posts: who's counting?
  • Currently Listening to:
    probably something somebody somewhere is snarling at...wait, Schoenberg! Definitely Schoenberg! (And, let's see, does he have a disciple or two...)...
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #16 on: May 13, 2007, 08:58:45 PM »
Danel - because 'angst' only scratches the surface of what these works are about.

I also own the Emerson set and the Shostakovich set, as well as various Borodin discs.

Still prefer the Danel. Masters of insight, they shed a beaming light into Shostakovich's musical thicket.

The superb sound is a nice bonus.



« Last Edit: May 13, 2007, 09:01:53 PM by donwyn »
Veit Bach-a baker who found his greatest pleasure in a little cittern which he took with him even into the mill and played while the grinding was going on. In this way he had a chance to have the rhythm drilled into him. And this was the beginning of a musical inclination in his descendants. JS Bach

SimonGodders

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2007, 11:28:37 PM »
Borodin, not just for the pathos they have, but also for the outright weirdness that they find in Shosty's soundworld.  Sort of like a circus inside and insane asylum.

I like that description, there is something 'manic' in their interpretations that literally leaves me feeling quite anxious at times. Very powerful.


Danel - because 'angst' only scratches the surface of what these works are about.

The superb sound is a nice bonus.

Agree, the focus is narrow. I also enjoy the more intellectualised view from the Danel's. I was reading the accompanying booklet in the set this morning and they certainly had some impressive tutelage supporting them in performing and recording the cycle.

Harry

  • Guest
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #18 on: May 14, 2007, 12:25:47 AM »
The Rubio on Brilliant is cheap, and very good.
I am going through it now, and are amazed how well they perform and how well it is recorded.

Offline sound67

  • Full Member
  • *
  • Posts: 710
Re: Shostakovich String Quartets
« Reply #19 on: May 14, 2007, 12:54:23 AM »
I agree, but found it a little bit on the fashionably "poker-faced" modern side.

The Emerson Quartet indeed do a great job, and their boy is comparatively cheap, too.

I obtained the recent re-release of the Melodya box, and if you want your Shostakovich "authentically" Russian, including sound quality, there's no better set than this:



Thomas
"Vivaldi didn't compose 500 concertos. He composed the same concerto 500 times" - Igor Stravinsky

"Mozart is a menace to musical progress, a relic of rituals that were losing relevance in his own time and are meaningless to ours." - Norman Lebrecht

Buying Music From Amazon?
Please consider using these links. A small percentage of every sale using these links is passed on to GMG and helps keep this forum online.
Amazon US
Amazon Canada
Amazon UK