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Schubert: String Quartet No.14, Quartettsatz Import

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Audio CD, Import, May 13, 2008
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Editorial Reviews

The Jerusalem Quartet was founded in 1993, and began its training in Jerusalem, under the direction of the violinist Avi Abramovitch. The Jerusalem Quartet are a regular guest on European and American concert platforms s well as Australia and New Zealand. They have performed several times at the Auditorium du Louvre in Paris, and made its first Japanese tour in the autumn of 2004. The Jerusalem Quartet regularly partners such artists as Jessye Norman, Daniel Barenboim, Joseph Kalichstein and they have taken part in master classes with such musicians as Isaac Stern, Michael Tee, Henry Meyer and members of the Amadeus Quartet. The quartet is Alexander Pavlovsky on violin, Sergei Bresler on violin, Amichai Grosz on viola, and Kyril Zlotnikov on cello.
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8:57
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3:48
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Product Details

  • Performer: Jerusalem Quartet
  • Composer: Franz Schubert
  • Audio CD (May 13, 2008)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: HARMONIA MUNDI
  • ASIN: B0012Y1I4U
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #258,845 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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By J. D. Baker on August 4, 2008
Format: Audio CD
First, the plaudits, and they are legion. In June, the Jerusalem Quartet's latest offering was named a "BBC Music Choice," rated 5/5 stars for both performance and sound, and called "as near to perfection as one can possibly find" by BBC Music magazine. Gramophone made the album July's "Editor's Choice" for chamber music, declaring it a "fine, compelling release" that "takes a slower-burn approach, a careful sense of story-telling that has its own deep rewards." The Strad magazine followed suit, naming it "theStrad Selection" for July: "the Jerusalem Quartet reaches a standard that few predecessors have achieved," "renewing old warhorses with skill, vigour and musicality." Diapason magazine has granted it similar praise, awarding it a "Diapason d'or." And Fanfare, in its Sept/Oct review, declares the 'Death' quartet is "simply tremendous playing" and "the opening 'Quartettsatz' is equally superb."

In the teeth of such absurdly universal acclaim you likely care little for my personal opinion, but I can happily report that, after multiple listenings, my enjoyment of the release has been commensurate with the public praise it has garnered. Of the multiple versions of Schubert's 'Death' I own -- including the Takács Quartet's edgy and well-received recent release, compared to which Jerusalem's allegro is slower by four full minutes, followed by an andante brisker by 14 noticeable seconds -- this is, hands down, my favorite and the one I reach for unless engaged in a specific exercise of comparison or recall.

We certainly have no dearth of 'Deaths'; every string quartet I've [n]ever heard of seemingly has recorded this best-known of Schubert's late string masterpieces (or, according to their press packages, soon will).
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I will go broke. I thought I had finished buying chamber music fifteen years ago. After all who could compete with the Italiano, Borodin, Takacs, Emerson, and Berg?

Well, it looks like I am not done yet -- not while there are performances like this by the Jerusalem -- to say nothing of the work by other great new(er) quartets: the Hugo Wolf, the Quatuor Ebene, the Pavel Haas, the Belcea Quartet, the Pacifica...
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I have listened to numerous ( more than a dozen ) different versions of this work, and I am most impressed by this CD. The performance as well as the recording are superb. The drama well presented. No reservations.
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Simply the most gorgeous, passionate, and eloquent performance possible.
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This disc was selected by Gramophone Magazine as their Editor's Choice in Chamber Music for the month of July!
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