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Quartet For The End Of Time

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Audio CD, March 23, 1999
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 23, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Koch Int'L Classics
  • ASIN: B00000I9N2
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #631,579 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Litugie de Cristal
2. Vocalise, pour l'Ange qui announce la fin du Temps
3. Abime des oiseaux
4. Intermede
5. Louange a l'Eternite de Jesus
6. Danse de la fureur, pour les sept trompettes
7. Fouillis d'arcs-en-ciel, pour l'Ange qui announce la fin du Temps
8. Louange a l'Immortalite de Jesus

Editorial Reviews

Product Description


Famously, albeit sadly, conceived, Olivier Messiaen's finest chamber work is a dance with circumstance and a tremendous flowering in the face of adversity. Written while the composer was a wartime prisoner in 1941, Quartet for the End of Time sounds teetery, vulnerable, and brittle. But it also features shearing whips from the clarinet that make the creative turbulence unmistakable. Christoph Eschenbach's piano is astounding, playing quiet atmospheres in the second movement--and again in the final movement--that couple with the strings to set a diaphanous feel, one where light, scant though it is, enlivens the mood. Messiaen envisioned the colors, he recalled, as a partial result of limited food rations, and the shoddy instruments on which he and others gave the original performance (while still imprisoned) only accentuated how sensitively he shaped the piece's dynamics. Although it builds slowly, this is an inventively rhythmic piece, with the clarinet-led ensemble pelting quietude with motion. Note also that the quartet's first movement is Messiaen's first incursion into bird sounds, something which occupied him for the rest of his composing career. --Andrew Bartlett

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 12, 2001
Format: Audio CD
The ensemble's incredible musicianship and amazing precision prove that this the best recording of the Quartet for the End of Time available!
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