Thursday, July 19, 2018

Veit: Complete String Quartets - Kertesz String Quartet (2018)

Composer : Wenzel Heinrich Veit (19 January 1806  - 16 February 1864)
Performer : Kertesz String Quartet
Label : Tocatta Classic
Date : July 2018

Another unknown string quartet from early Romantic composer resurrected. This is from Czech composer, Wenzel Heinrich Veit (19 January 1806  - 16 February 1864). There are two volume of his string quartets being recorded by Kertesz Quartet from UK. This is indeed their world premiere recording of Veit's String Quartet.

You can listen to sample of Veit String Quartet in Kertesz String Quartet website HERE

As I listen to their sample, these are beautiful piece. The string quartet in D minor IV Finale Presto, provided an energetic piece. There is actually distinguished style from the composer which I really think not very much influence by his contemporary. There aren't Beethoven, Mendelssohn or Schubert attached to the music. This is quite original by itself.. The other quartet that in sample is String Quartet no. 2 in E Major, III. Scherzo movement. This one sound very grande as it is composed to be played in large concert room. I listen to this and feel like a big orchestra accompanying a scherzo dancing crowd. Very tasteful.

The two volume  of Wenzel Heinrich Veit are :

Vol. 1
String Quartet No.1 in D minor Op.3 (1834)
1. I. Allegro moderato 09:54
2. II. Menuetto: Allegretto 06:16
3. III. Hymne russe: Andante con moto 08:24
4. IV. Finale: Presto agitato 07:06

String Quartet No.2 in E major Op. 5 (1835)
5. I. Introduzione (Sostenuto) - Allegro vivace 09:37
6. II. Adagio cantabile quasi Andante 06:33
7. III. Scherzo: Presto 05:50
8. IV. Rondo: Allegro non tanto 08:41

Vol . 2
String Quartet No.3 in E-Flat Major, Op. 7 (1838)
1. I. Allegro moderato e patetico 09:50
2. II. Menuetto. Allegretto 05:40
3. III. Andante 07:30
4. IV. Finale. Allegro molto 09:12

String Quartet No.4 in G Min, Op.16 (1840)
5. I. Allegro molto ed appassionato 10:01
6. II. Menuetto. Allegretto ma non troppo 04:25
7. III. Adagio 10:14
8. IV. Allegro assai - Andante con moto (Air de Bohème) - Allegro assai 09:50

tag: wenzel heinrich veit string quartet review, forgotten string quartet, romantic string quartet release 2018

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Luigi Boccherini - String Quartets (2017) - Ensemble Trifolium

Luigi Boccherini (Lucca, 1743 - Madrid, 1805)
String Quartets
Performer : Ensemble Trifolium
Release : 2017
Label : Lindoro

Ensemble Trifolium hailed from Spain recorded four Quartets of Luigi Boccherini in this recent CD. They are doing four popular works from Boccherini in Gm G205, in G "La Tirana" G223, in Gm G194 and in Cm G159.   You can hear it samples from this widget :

The CD notes translation :

The present recording allows to overthrow the myth of Luigi Boccherini (Lucca, 1743 - Madrid, 1805) as author of works of light tone, gallant and even superficial and brings us to a deeper facet of the composer, which runs parallel to the aesthetic- of the Central European Sturm und Drang.

Luigi Boccherini is an essential but controversial figure in the history of music in Spain. On the one hand, his birth in Lucca (Italy) marginalized him from the discourses elaborated by Spanish musicology with a nationalist tinge of the late nineteenth and twentieth centuries, despite the fact that most of his life and career are under the protection of Spanish institutions. In addition, the supposed Italian invasion that "contaminated" Spanish music throughout the eighteenth century also made it an uncomfortable figure to tackle. On the other hand, traditional historiography has considered Joseph Haydn (1732-1809) as the "inventor" of two instrumental genres of great importance in all later European music: the symphony and the string quartet. This supposed invention, which in reality consists in the adoption of a local model (the Viennese) as a universal (European) model of composition, helped to establish a German-centric canon that considered all other compositional traditions, among which the Italian-Spanish Boccherini, as less developed links. Popularly, the knowledge of Boccherini's music has been reduced to the celebrated minuet of his string quintet in Mi Mayor (G. 275) and his quintet titled La Musica Notturna delle strade di Madrid (G. 324). These pieces have portrayed the composer as a gallant and superficial author. Fortunately, numerous musicologists have worked on several facets of the life and work of Boccherini, offering a renewed image of the musician. This historiographical revision, along with the elaboration of the critical edition of his works, evidences the high quality and depth of his music and contradicts the idea of ​​the supposed isolation that Boccherini suffered in Spain.

Boccherini composed string quartets over forty years: his first opus (opus 2) was dated in 1761, while the last completed (opus 58) is from the year 1799. The four quartets chosen for this work present different chronologies. The earliest is dated in 1761, when Boccherini traveled to Vienna and to various Italian cities where he earned his living as an interpreter in orchestras or playing his own music. The two intermediate quartets were composed between 1778 and 1780, during his stay in Arenas de San Pedro (Avila) under the patronage of the infant Don Luis de Borbón (1727-1785). The later quartet is of the year 1792. After the death of Don Luis, Boccherini returned to Madrid, obtaining of Carlos III an annual pension for having been in the service of the infant. He also obtained the favor of other aristocratic patrons: he was appointed chamber composer of Prince Frederick William of Prussia, a position he held between 1786 and 1797, and worked as conductor and composer of the orchestra of the Duchess of Osuna and Benavente, Maria Josefa Alonso Pimentel (1750-1834), between March 1786 and December 1787.

String Quartet in G minor Op. 32 no 5 (G. 205)
1 Allegro comodo 4’45’’
2 Andantino 3’58’’
3 Menuetto con moto 4’48’’
4 Allegro giusto 4’24’’

String Quartet in G Major "La Tirana" Op. 44 no 4 (G. 223)
5 Presto 5’02’’
6 Tempo di minueto 4’49’’

String Quartet in G minor Op. 24 no 6 (G. 194)
7 Allegro assai 5’29’’
8 Adagio 6’59’’
9 Menuetto 3’56’’

String Quartet in C minor Op. 2 no 1 (G. 159)
10 Allegro comodo 6’18’’
11 Largo 7’29’’
12 Allegro 5’55’’

Total time: 63’58”


Carlos Gallifa, violín
Sergio Suárez, violín
Juan Mesana, viola
Javier Aguirre, violoncello

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Franz Xaver Gebel - String Quintet and Cello Sonata (2017)

Franz Xaver Gebel (1787-1843)
Performers : Hoffmeister String Quartet, Beni Araki (Piano), Martin Seeman (Cello)
Label : Profil
Release : January 2017

We already have the Hoffmeister String Quartet doing Franz Xaver Gebel string quartet in this recording back in 2015. As for this new CD, Hoffmeister Quartet continue to dig FX Gebel works which is his String Quintet no.8 in B flat major and Cello Sonata in E-flat Major. There are also already recordings of two string quintet in HERE. So, we will have at least three solid string quintet from meister Franz Xaver Gebel. He was grown up in Breslau and them moved to Russia in 1817.

Here are the CD notes :
"Franz Xaver Gebel was born in Fürstenau (Milin) near Breslau (Wrocław) in 1787 and received his musical education in Vienna, as did many of his Silesian peers. His list of teachers included Abbé Vogler and Johann Georg Albrechtsberger. In Vienna, Gebel was engaged at first as the director of music at the Theater in Leopoldstadt and published some compositions including the Great Sonata for pianoforte and violoncello. After working as a director of music in Vienna, Pest, Hermannstadt (Sibiu), and Lemberg (now Lviv in Western Ukraine), he ended up in Moscow in 1817, where he spent the rest of his life and gave private lessons for piano and composition. Some of his famous students included young philosophers and literati like Nikolai Stankevich and Nikolai Ogaryov, and other individuals who were significant for the later musical culture in Moscow: The author and music critic Nikolai Melgunow and the pianist Alexander Villoing, who was engaged as a teacher to the young Anton Rubinstein from 1837 and can be considered the founder of the Russian school for pianists. Of the pieces Gebel composed in Moscow, seven string quintets and one string quartet were printed in his last years in Moscow. Also a Russian translation of his composition studies was published – this was the first textbook on musical composition in Russian! We can find considerable appreciation of Gebel’s merits for the Moscow musical culture in the obituary by the anonymous Muscovite correspondent in the Leipzig Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung from June 23, 1843. The “adored and respected composer and pianist” was eulogized there as follows:

“Gebel was born in Breslau and lived here [in Moscow] for 35 years, in ceaseless dedication to improving musical tastes. As a pianist and theorist, he taught for 10 rubles an hour in the best homes and was highly esteemed as a master of his art. He lived - as every true artist - more for heaven than for earth. He did not worship money. If a poetic thought surprised him, he often forgot for weeks to give his lessons and sat at his desk putting his thoughts onto paper […]. Earlier, a select circle of art connoisseurs and art lovers, who purchased season tickets during the winter, were treated to a cycle including Gebel’s own work and that of other masters. These performances were composed of quartet and quintets and moved audiences into rapt awe by transporting them with truly beautiful pieces. Participants in these soirées look back on those occasions with great pleasure.”

Subscribers to Gebel’s evenings of chamber music had purchased tickets to what was probably the first public chamber concerts in Moscow, where they heard sophisticated pieces by Ludwig van Beethoven, and also quartets and quintets by Gebel himself. Gebel’s compositions apparently made quite an impression on his contemporaries. Almost 20 years after Gebel’s death, the String Quintet No. 8 and the Double Quintet Op. 28 were published at the Julius Schuberth publishing house in Leipzig in 1862. Today, this composer has mostly been forgotten in Russia as well as everywhere else."

Which read as very appealing background story. Fans of Classical period chamber music should rejoice upon this newly arrived quintet and cello sonata.

Franz Xaver Gebel - String Quintet and Cello Sonata (2017)

Franz Xaver Gebel: String Quintet No. 8 in B-Flat Major, Op. 27

I. Allegro agitato
II. Adagio espressivo
III. Scherzo: Allegro
IV. Finale: Andante - Allegro

Franz Xaver Gebel: Cello Sonata in E-Flat Major

I. Allegro
II. Romance: Adagio
III. Scherzo: Allegro moderato
IV. Allegro ma non troppo

Monday, September 19, 2016

Pleyel String Quartet Op.41-42 Nos 1-2 - Authentic Quartet

Ignaz Pleyel (1757-1837)
Performer : Authentic Quartet
Label : Hungaroton
Released : Aug 2016

It's been a while since we last heard about Authentic Quartet and Ignaz Pleyel. The Hungaroton front line period quartet ensemble finally dedicated some work on Ignaz Pleyel string quartet. This time we got four quartets, from Opus 41 and 42, both two quartets. I'm not sure what is the Ben catalog on this one. The consequent of C Major and F Major can be found at Ben 346 and 347, then the G Major and B-Flat Major in Ben 349 and 350. But the year of released  are seemingly not consistent. The front cover CD also suggested as "First Recording".

the CD blurb :

Authentic Quartet, the ensemble playing on period instruments, has released another world premiere recording featuring Ignace Pleyel's two string quartets. The pieces are most likely to have been written during the composer's concert tour in England, or maybe a bit later as the melodies and rhythmic structures remind the listener of Scottish folk music. Owing to their simple structures and lyrical melodic lines, the compositions can be classified as easy violin music offering a highly enjoyable listening experience. 

Pleyel String Quartet Op.41-42 Nos 1-2 - Authentic Quartet

String Quartet in C Major, Op. 41 No. 1
I. Allegro
II. Rondo eccossois: Allegro

String Quartet in F Major, Op. 41 No. 2
I. Allegro
II. Air eccossois: Andante
III. Rondo eccossois: Allegro

String Quartet in G Major, Op. 42 No. 1
I. Allegro
II. Air eccossois: Rondo moderato

String Quartet in B-Flat Major, Op. 42 No. 2
I. Allegro
II. Air eccossois: Adagio espressivo
III. Air eccossois: Rondo allegro

Friday, August 19, 2016

Lindsey Stirling - Brave Enough (2016)

Lindsey Stirling Brave Enough album review by

Yeah, of course I listen to Lindsey Stirling also, along with my zillions of classical chamber music. Miss Lindsey Stirling is a hip hop / dubstep / disco violinist that taken the world by storm beat in 2012 with her debut album. Her music incorporated catchy violin playing accompanied by the last version of disco music that called "dubstep". Her other trademark is the Youtube video she always produced to visualized her violin playing. She is one of Youtube celebrity indeed, she easily make millions of Youtube likes just by playing violin, bet not much any violinist can do.

Brave Enough is her third studio album. The most elements that different from previous albums are, this album brave enough to included half dozen of vocal tracks. Well, people like to listen to your violin playing miss Lindsey, but hey we let you explore also. We'll talk about the instrumentals tracks first, as this is what the majority of the house looking at the album. I love the opener "Lost Girls", because its started mellow and slow with crystal clear violin playing trying to stealth your breath away. This track is the direct continuation of Lindsey Stirling styles. The pumping beat still there, with lots of minor scale licks, the electronic "uh-uh" vocal, we got Lindsey Stirling trademark. Then we got "The Arena", which is supposed to be bit of tango-like elements, judge from the videoclip. Indeed the track worth enough to be the album single because this one really biting here and there with the violin playing and mixed well with the choreography at the clip. "The Phoenix" is having bit of oriental feeling and that went good with violin usually. We then get "Prism", which according to sources, is the OST for the next Disney movie "Pete's Dragon".  The song is lighter then previouses. Prism lighten up situation with enjoyable disco violin music. I bet most children will like it as well.

Now I must praise "Mirage (feat. Raja Kumari)". This is the track where Lindsey collab-ing with Indian style music and musicians. Now if you like Bollywood, this is your chances to get it done with Lindsey Stirling. I like it very much and the song added more color to the album. "First Light" is the most 'standard' tunes with violin music without any 'stunt'. The other easy listening song are "Gavi's Song", where a duet of violin and piano is going to bring your evening to the moon. In several package (Deluxe version), there are about four additional bonus songs. Waltz, Afterglow, Powerlines, and Forgotten are that four songs , all instrumentals.

For the vocals songs, I recommended foremost is "Where Do We Go" featuring Carah Faye. This is a pop song that mixed well with violin lick playing at background. The two elements, vocals and violin is equal and fills in each other. The flag song "Brave Enough" itself is also powerful. Featuring Christina Perri, this song is focusing more into the vocals and the lyrics. The violin get some beautiful melodies though. "Those Days" featuring Dan + Shay, is intimate boy band style song, the violin comes a bit in the background. "Hold My Heart" featuring ZZ Ward is having complicated mix between disco+alternative pop+rock because of ZZ Ward's unique musical style. "Don't Let This Feeling Fade" well, the only song that I don't thing works in this environment, the rap of Rivers Cuomo & Lecrae is trying their best to fit. Mysterious singer, Rooty, is the next singer to sing in "Love's Just a Feeling", a pop song with bit of '80 feel. Must admit that the male voice also a bit of challenge in pair with violin playing. "Something Wild" featuring Andrew McMahon In the Wilderness, is this last challenge. The song gone with folk-like nuance, not much problem and I like it actually.

Brave Enough is lovely third studio album by Lindsey Stirling. The two years in wait maximum miss Lindsey creativity and this album is reflecting the quality of her music. This album is not strict violin orientated album, just like her debut. Some die hard violin lover might protest the, ehem, originality of this album is not as high as the first album. It is true that we found lesser Lindsey magic melodies in this album, because the large volume of vocals song. But, with about 18 tracks in Brave Enough, we have enough instrumental tracks to choose. At least I feel this album is better concept than her in-between second studio album, Shatter Me. So, shut the door and turn your ampli with maximum bass frequency, the album is really to rock beat it!

Lindsey Stirling - Brave Enough (2016)

01. Lost Girls
02. Brave Enough (feat. Christina Perri)
03. The Arena
04. The Phoenix
05. Where Do We Go (feat. Carah Faye)
06. Those Days (feat. Dan + Shay)
07. Prism
08. Hold My Heart (feat. ZZ Ward)
09. Mirage (feat. Raja Kumari)
10. Don't Let This Feeling Fade (feat. Rivers Cuomo & Lecrae)
11. First Light
12. Love's Just a Feeling (feat. Rooty)
13. Something Wild (feat. Andrew McMahon In the Wilderness)
14. Gavi's Song
15. Waltz (Bonus Track)
16. Afterglow (Bonus Track)
17. Powerlines (Bonus Track)
18. Forgotten Voyage (Bonus Track)

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

String Chamber Music by 18th Century Bohemian Composers - Soijka Quartet (2016)

String Chamber Music by 18th Century Bohemian Composers 
Performer : Soijka Quartet
Label : TYX Art
Release : July 2016   BUY IT HERE

This is a series of largely forgotten Bohemian composers done by TYX Art label. In this CD four composers are submitted a piece of chamber music, well, three of them are string quartets. Of course the Czech string quartet had been familiar by the works of Johann Baptist Wanhal, Pavel Vranicky, Franz Krommer or Antonin Rejcha. The four of composers we introduced are lesser known by us, who are: Antonin Kammel, Florian Leopold Gassmann, Franz Koczwara, and Anton Zimmerman. A tasty feast for string quartet lovers as these quartet are wonderful in presentation.

The CD notes :

The goal of the Joachim Wollenweber Edition is to turn the publics attention to classical and romantic composers who have been largely forgotten. This release is the fifth album in the series, and is dedicated to four 18th century Bohemian composers, Antonin Kammel, Florian Leopold Gassmann, Franz Koczwara, and Anton Zimmerman. Performing these works is the Sojka String Quartet, which was founded by music students at the Academy of Performing Arts in Prague in 2009. The ensembles focus is classical music, and contemporary works from the Czech republic. 

Antonín Kammel (born 1739 in Běleč / Biel Adige, died in 1784 in London) was formed according to studies in his home of Giuseppe Tartini in Padua. In 1765 he went to London, where he apparently wrote only instrumental music, mostly in occupations for Strings. The String Quartet in B flat major is the second plant of a set of six quartets, printed as Opus 7 in London (undated).

Florian Leopold Gassmann (born 1729 in Most / Most, died in 1774 in Vienna) came after studies at Padre GB Martini in Bologna initially produced primarily as an opera composer in Venice. Since 1763, he worked as a "court and Kammercompositor" in Vienna and helped the court orchestra to new heights. The String Quartet in C major is the second one in 1804 published collection of six quartets.

Franz Koczwara (born in 1750 in Prague, died in 1791 in London) spent his mature years in England, where he was a member of various orchestras, most recently as a double bass player at King '€ ™ s Theatre in London. The Sonata for Two Violas and Cello in C major is the sixth of a collection of sonatas for various occupations, which was published about 1775 in London.

Anton Zimmermann (born 1741 Breitenau / Široká Niva, died in 1781 in Pressburg / Bratislava) was in the service of the Archbishop (later Cardinal) and Primate of Hungary Joseph Batthyány in Preߟburg for which he established, among other things, a chamber orchestra since 1776th His String Quartet in F major is the third work of the six quartets Op. 3, which were created in 1770 and published about 1777th

written by : Andreas Wehrmeyer 

The Sojka string quartet went from students of the Music Faculty of Prague's Academy of Performing Arts (AMU) produced. Since 2009, it plays in the cast: Martin Kos and Martin Kaplan (violin), Josef Fiala (Viola) and Hana Vítková (cello). Priorities of the ensemble are the music of classical and contemporary music in the Czech Republic. Since 2012 the musicians have also been multiple guests abroad. 2015 was the quartet he has concerts in Japan and worked on feast days for contemporary music in Prague.

CD-Programm / Trackliste: - BUY IT HERE

Antonín Kammel (1739 – 1784)
Streichquartett B-Dur (op. 7 Nr. 2) /
String Quartet B Flat Major (op. 7 No. 2)
I Allegro,
II Andante espressivo,
III Tempo di Menuetto

Florian Leopold Gassmann (1729 – 1774)
Streichquartett C-Dur /
String Quartet C Major
I Andante,
II Allegro, Menuetto – Trio,
III Allegro

Franz Koczwara (ca. 1750 – 1791)
Sonate für zwei Violen und Violoncello C-Dur /
Sonata for Two Violas and Cello C Major
I Andante espressivo,
II Adagio,
III Rondo (Allegro)

Anton Zimmermann (1741 – 1781)
Streichquartett F-Dur (op. 3 Nr. 3) /
String Quartet F Major (op. 3 No. 3)
I Andante un poco Adagio,
II Menuetto (Allegretto) – Trio, Allegro, Menuetto – Trio,
III Finale – Allegro non molto

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Complete List of Luigi Boccherini String Quartets Recordings

Luigi Boccherini was Italian composer who composed a large number of chamber music. His string quartets numbered more than 100 works, unfortunately some are lost. Here are the complete list of Luigi Boccherini's string quartets and its recordings. There are 106 string quartets in the Gerard Catalog. The most recorded quartets seems to be the Six quartets in Opus 32. At the moment only less than 50% of all Boccherini string quartets got recorded, well according to my Amazon research only. Hopefully there will be more ensemble playing his pieces.