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  • Beethoven: String Quartets Nos. 3, 5 & 16, Opp. 18:3,5;135
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Beethoven: String Quartets Nos. 3, 5 & 16, Opp. 18:3,5;135

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Audio CD, June 7, 2011
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$18.46 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 1 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.


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Product Details

  • Performer: Artemis Quartet
  • Composer: Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Audio CD (June 7, 2011)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Erato Disques
  • ASIN: B004QQDUWE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #431,095 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Santa Fe Listener HALL OF FAMETOP 1000 REVIEWER on August 10, 2011
Format: Audio CD
As they bring their long-in-the-making Beethoven cycle to an end, having bridged a change of viola and second violin in 2004, the Artemis Quartet stands apart for several reasons. They are skilled in all the departments of quartet ensemble, including blend, unanimity, intonation, and precision. These qualities have attracted high-level collaborators like Thomas Ades and Leif Ove Andsnes. Their style is forward-looking, in that they have taken the Emerson Qt. sleekness and modern tone and allied it to a more European sense of tradition. I think of their Beethoven as being 'updated' the way younger conductors now lead the symphonies, with the emphasis on momentum and agility rather than revolutionary passion and romantic intensity.

I won't claim to be a fan of this change, but we can't live by the Busch Quartet alone. This final installment is impeccable so far as the two early Op. 18 quartets are concerned. Everything is light, bright, and sparkling, if a bit antiseptic. I wonder why so many contemporary groups, in tossing out romanticism, left out classical wit, too? Haydn and Mozart had it, and they seem to be the model of modern Beethoven quartet style. I know I'm swimming against the current, but does anyone seriously accept that Beethoven wanted squeaky-clean performances of his music? In the current landscape, the Artemis offer Op. 18 with control but not tightness, relaxing their disciplined playing enough to let in air and sunlight. They deserve praise, too, for exploring color effects that old-school quartets, pursuing a uniform "symphonic" sound, barely touched upon. I was never bored.

My reaction to the Artemis in the late quartets has been much less enthusiastic. Their highly organized, proficient readings fall short of Beethoven's enigmatic intentions - Op.
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Beethoven: String Quartets Nos. 3, 5 & 16, Opp. 18:3,5;135
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