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Weinberg - String Quartets

Vol. 6: Nos. 2 op. 3/145; 12 op. 103 & 17 op. 146

Quatuor Danel

CPO 7775872 [recorded 2008/09]

Belatedly, because of the vagaries of discs for reviewing, with impossibly many releases each month, we have only now come across Mieczyslaw Weinberg's String Quartet series on cpo; even the largest websites are selective, and ours tends towards featuring "niche" events and productions.

This last volume spans the period from 1939 to 1987, when No. 2 acquired a late opus after revision. No 12 is the longest and most exploratory of these three, with allusions to Bartok and a brush with dodecaphony. This well documented (David Fanning) and produced disc makes me keen to catch up with the others.

The Danels have devoted themselves to this project since 1994 and pay generous tribute to their team - especially the sound engineer Barbara Valentin - who helped to make this landmark intégrale collection (reminding me of how the Nightingale Quartet has seized a comparable opportunity for the hitherto unknown quartets of Rued Langgaard, of which their premiere intégrale set is well underway).

Peter Grahame Woolf

Review of Vol.1. CPO 777313-2 [Steve Schwartz, Classical Net]: Shostakovich seemed to regard Weinberg as a kind of musical son - - These two scores would be considered masterpieces had Shostakovich actually written them - - if the rest come up to the marks these set, we have a major quartet cycle of the Twentieth Century

See also: Weinberg Songs