There are so many recordings of this quintet it boggles the mind.
How do you choose?
Over the years, I must have purchased 10 or more CDs looking for that "perfect fit" for my personal taste.
Spent a lot of dollars and found out it's true-"you get what you pay for".
First.. You will find you have to own more than one version, because everyone plays it differently.
One of the bigger differences is everyone plays each section at different tempos.
Now this is mostly very subtle, but if you listen to enough versions, you will hear how tempo effects Schuberts gorgeous melodies.
Too fast and the melodies have no room to bloom or "resolve".
This performance is one of the cleanest well played and executed out there.
The tempi is just right and there is air around every note bringing a beautiful transparency and tone.
The Hagen Quartet was at the height of their burgeoning career when this was recorded in 1994. And I guess DG was also, because the sound quality is SUPERB.
Clean, transparent, rich with excellent front to back depth (which is the failing of most recordings) and clarity. You can hear every note. This one has it right.
This is one of 3 completely different sounding interpretations I have decided to keep.
Raphael Ensemble on Hyperion and Orpheus Quartet on Channel Classics.
When you own these 3, you will have almost 3 different pieces of music that only sound the same if you are using it as background music.
If you really wanna listen, you will hear what I mean.
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