Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Beethoven, Budapest String Quartet|
String Quartets Opp. 127, 131, 132 & 135
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Excellent performance and good sound for the period
T. S. Fox | 08/20/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"This is an enjoyable set. The performances are excellent, and the sound remarkable considering that this is from 1940-42. I would not make this my first choice for these works, however, because successive generations of string quartets have learned their lessons well. Indeed, Quartetto Italiano, Lasalle(late quartets), Emerson (middle), Vegh (early), and others perform even better."
Supreme late Beethoven.
fungfucius | Lagrangeville, NY United States | 07/10/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Late Beethoven quartet playing doesn't come any better than this! It's a shame that these 2 CD's don't include quartet no. 13, and the Grosse Fugue. The recordings come from 78's and are mono. But no apology is needed, the sound is full and ABSOLUTELY VERY GOOD. There's a similar 2-CD Sony set covering the Budapest's traveral of some of the early and middle Beethovens. Together, these 4 Sony CD's are a few notches better than what's offered on Bridge, where the Budapest was recorded live at the Library of Congress. Bridge offers the Budapest on 6 CD's. But there, the sound is sometimes horrible although the playing is no less than gripping. I'm particularly impressed by quartet no. 14 (Opus 131.) The penatration into the music is as deep as the Busch quartet, but technically, the Budapest plays better. This quartet was at its peak in the 1940's; there was no intonation problem at all.While you are at it, read the biography of the Budapest quartet as told by Nat Brandt, the son-in-law of Boris Kroyt (the Budapest's violist.) Buy this Sony set. Highly recommended."
T. S. Fox | 06/20/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I agree entirely with the first reviewer. The Emersons never manage to get so near the the heart of this music; the Italians are often too slow and reverential. To me, the only rivals are the Pro Arte and the Calvet - both pre-war Quartets, neither of which came anywhere near to recording the full Beethoven repertoire.
But my main purpose is to point out that Budapest collectors do have an alternative for Quartet No. 13, Op.130. The 1934 HMV recording with Ipolyi on viola was reissued on Biddulph two years ago. coupled with Op.59 No.2 from 1935 (ASIN:B000EBFMDU). It was doubtless the existence of this recording which prevented its commercial duplication by Sony in the early 1940's. Whether or not it is preferable to the Library of Congess version on Bridge is a moot point. Neither recording is sonically up to the standard of these four by Sony."