Save Big On Open-Box & Pre-owned: Buy "Shostakovich: String Quartets Nos. 1 - 13” from Amazon Warehouse Deals and save 49% off the $29.99 list price. Product is eligible for Amazon's 30-day returns policy and Prime or FREE Shipping. See all Open-Box & Pre-owned offers from Amazon Warehouse Deals.
Other Sellers on Amazon
Shostakovich: String Quartets Nos. 1 - 13 Box set
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Special Offers and Product Promotions
Top Customer Reviews
Of course the last two quartets didn't exist at the time of these recordings, but they were set down by the slightly reconfigured Borodins soon thereafter and it is too bad those documents have been orphaned as they would have made the most logical compliment to this not quite complete set.
As to the performances themselves, they are classic, comparable to the later EMI versions but heard in a warmer acoustic, which has the effect of making the music seem a little less edgy, too.
One hopes that some of the other masterful cycles of this music by groups such as the Beethoven, Tanayev and Shostakovich Quartets will return to the catalog. The Borodins are great, but not the last or only word on the subject.
The major differences between the old and new Borodin accounts have to do with temperament and tonal qualities. There's plenty of characteristically Russian expressiveness in the earlier versions, with more vibrato than that used by non-Russian ensembles like the Fitzwilliam and Emerson, and recognizably "vocal" phrasing given to much of the folk-inspired (or quoted) melodic writing.Read more ›
The performances are comparable to the 1980s Melodiya traversal now available on EMI, which is to say they are pretty great though perhaps a shade less intense, an impression abetted by the sound, which is warmer and more spacious than in the later set. But, of course, that one gives you all 15 Quartets and the Piano Quintet with Richter.
Their classic cycle from 1967-71, minus the 14th and 15th Quartets, which were composed in 1973 and 1974, has been successfully remastered by chandos - so far as i know, this particular issue, which dates to 2003, is the latest version. It captures Russian musicianship at its most penetrating. By comparison, even the very skilled, idiomatic Shostakovich Qt. (once on Olympia but now reissued on the bargain Regis label) sounds a touch unadventurous. There is really no way to tell that these silent, full-range recordings are decades old. The personnel of the Borodins changed dramatically when the charismatic first violinist, Rotislav Dubinsky, defected to the West in 1974, leaving behind a trial of bitter recriminations and counter-recriminations.
The ensemble regrouped after a two-year hiatus, largely due to the indefatigable cellist Valentin Berlinsky, who was cast into the shadows by Dubinsky as a Communist Part member but who must be acknowledged for remaining with the quartet for an astonishing 62 years (1945-2007).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
When this miraculous set is available on Amazon for less than the cost of postage, I don't see how anyone remotely interested in the music would pass it up. Read morePublished 13 months ago by Dabí Sánchez
Surprisingly good sound highlights this cornucopia of delights. Highlights include my nomination for best Op.118 ever, with Nos. 7-8 also outstanding. Read morePublished 16 months ago by 21st Century Reviews
Thrilling recording. My favorite is No. 8, the self - named DSCH Quartet, after the composer's initials translated IPublished 23 months ago by Terry Quinn
These are really good performances of quite original string quartets. At times I have been adicted to Bartok and Shoernberg string quartets but these by Shoshtakovich make a nice... Read morePublished on February 25, 2014 by Steven R. Severance
Shostakovich can be difficult fare, but this recording is absolutely stratospheric. The music is both uplifting and downtrodden, but the performance is consistently brilliant.Published on May 23, 2013 by J A Jones
The real shame about this set is of course that it is incomplete. I cry crocodile tears for the 14th as I am not as attached to it as the deeply profound 15th. Read morePublished on July 18, 2009 by Dmitri