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Brahms: String Quartets Nos. 1 & 3 / Artemis Quartet

Album Summary

>Brahms, Johannes : Quartet for Strings no 1 in C minor, Op. 51/1
>Brahms, Johannes : Quartet for Strings no 3 in B flat major, Op. 67
Ensemble Composer

Notes & Reviews:

The Artemis Quartet pairs Brahms' intense first quartet with his lighter-spririted third quartet, both works that the Artemis' cellist, Eckart Runge, describes as "remarkable and multi-faceted". He says that "Brahms marries a Romantic spirit with the structure and forms of Classicism. There is an almost symphonic approach in the writing, but at the same time the quartets are imbued with a sense of warmth, immediacy, friendship and love that is interwoven with a more spiritual, timeless beauty".

The Artemis Quartet, named after the Greek goddess of hunt and wilderness, is a German string quartet. The quartet was founded in 1989 and is now Berlin based.

The Artemis Quartet pairs Brahms' intense first quartet with his lighter-spririted third quartet, both works that the Artemis' cellist, Eckart Runge, describes as "remarkable and multi-faceted". He says that "Brahms marries a Romantic spirit with the structure and forms of Classicism. There is an almost symphonic approach in the writing, but at the same time the quartets are imbued with a sense of warmth, immediacy, friendship and love that is interwoven with a more spiritual, timeless beauty".

Sunday Times, 20th September 2015
As the excellent German group the Artemis remind us, the C minor is the composer at his most compelling and passionate, with complex, pulsating cross-rhythms, daring changes of key and expressive melodies. The later, more playful B flat also receives a fine performance, at once dynamic and subtly flexible.

Gramophone Magazine, October 2015
The Artemis give us a Brahms of and for our time, inevitably informed by their work on Bartok and Ligeti just as much as on late Beethoven... [they have] taste and sense in abundance, and we could count ourselves very lucky to hear nowadays a performance of the C minor Symphony that matched this recording for its urgency and discretion of response.

BBC Music Magazine, December 2015
The emotional palette is broad: surging intensity is balanced emotionally by tenderness, delicate sensitivity, and... even by touches of humour. But the balance is architectural too. It may be a slightly partial view of Brahms, but it's hard to deny that the cap fits, that performances in which this music speaks so effectively and so consistently are infrequent, and that questions of whether either work represents 'real' quartet writing have rarely seemed less relevant.



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Works Details

>Brahms, Johannes : Quartet for Strings no 1 in C minor, Op. 51/1
  • Ensemble: Artemis Quartet
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1866-1873

>Brahms, Johannes : Quartet for Strings no 3 in B flat major, Op. 67
  • Period Time: Romantic
  • Written: 1876