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Parla, any suggestions for a recording of the set of Op.20. They are rather thin on the ground. I'm not fond of original instruments (and the style that goes with them) in these works.
Try the Pellegrini Quartet on CPO, Chris.
It's a very good SACD recording which gives a fully detailed performance of these very special String Quartets. The second movement of the C major Quartet for example is given in extremely unique and powerful way (a magnificent Fantasia). The first movement of the E flat is also given in full drive and detail. The two minor mode ones (f and g minor) are very well performed, while the other two, the glorious one in D and the quiet but radiant one in A are also well served.
Thank you Parla for the recommedation of the Pellegrini Quartet I have ordered it to compare to the Auryn and Mosaiques that I own
I've listened to the Pellegrini op 20 set a few times now. I don't have an SACD player so my comments pertiain to my equipment and might not hold true for others. The Pellegrini sound is clear, gentle, and as rule somewhat restrained. I find the Auryn [on Tacet] more dynamic and with a little more punch and swing, also with an exceptionally clear sound. The Mosaiques are even more punchy very vibrant and quite exciting, even though the string sound is softer they are a little more agressive. All three are excellent recordings. If one was forced into choosing only one, or preferred to own only one, I think it would be a matter of personal preferrence.
SJ, I agree with your views on the versions you mentioned, except for the Ayrun (on Tacet), which I haven't yet got. I have some more too, maybe less distinctive.
Because I have a SACD unit, a high-end one (Krell EV-505), the Pellegrini sounds with more space, ambience, while the dynamics are clearer, even if they don't play so aggressively. However, the bottom line is that between such great ensembles, the choice is more personal than ever, while, if you can afford to have more, much better for the overall view of such wonderful and pivotal works.
I'm eagerly awaiting when Praga is going to record them with one of the four great String Quartets it employs. The recent "Seven Last Words" of Haydn with the Prazak was miraculous.
I'm still awaiting the arrival of my Pellegrini Op.20 (and also for the Prazak Schubert Quintet). In the meantime I noticed a newish recording (on Onyx) of the Op.33 set with the 'new' Borodin Quartet. Have either of you heard this, Parla or SJ (Or indeed anyone else!). I once had the Weller quartet's lps but they seem to not be around on CD.
And Parla; is it hope or expectation that the Prazak are about to record more Haydn?
It's more expectation than hope, Chris. However, I'm not sure if there will be the Prazak or the Parkanyi or the Kocian or the Zemlinsky Quartet.
So far, the Zemlinsky (the newest of them all) has not recorded any set of Haydn's Quartets. Kocian, which is the oldest of the four, has undertaken op. 74 (superb interpretation) and the op. 77 (wonderful too). The Parkanyi (an excellent ensemble) has embarked on op.33 (which I recommend very strongly) and the op. 54 (very good too). The Prazak (the flagship of the label) has recorded the very important op.76, the underrated op. 50 and the "Seven Last Words", their latest sublime achievement. My suggestion is to collect all of them, slowly and gradually. They are all top class performances and brilliant recordings.
So, I believe one or some of them have to record the very significant op. 20 and the rather underrated op. 64.
I'd be very interested to hear your view on the Auryn when you acquire it Parla, I think they might offer SACD versions of some of their Haydn recordings which might be off interest to you.
Chris, I haven't heard the new Borodin's will investigate. I don't think that the Mosaique's op 33 is quite in the same class a their 20.
Parka, it might be DVDS not SACS for the hi def Auryn. My CD player is a Naim CDS 3 so ordinary CDs sound quite good but I can't help wonder if I'm missing anything without hi def. SJ
Parla, it might be DVDA not SACD for the hi def Auryn. My CD player is aa Naim CDS 3 so ordinary CDs sound quite good but I can't help wonder if I'm missing anything without hi def. Stephenjohn
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