Sunday, March 14, 2010

aLa Contra Bass

Boccherini Op.39 Quintet for Contrabass and String Quartet , Op.44 no.4 La tiranna.

My first entry to this blog and it’s quite a difficult to decide what will be the title.

I listened to a new CD of Boccherini. I got a numbers of his works now. But this is special one. The works is for String Quintet with addition of Contre Bass instead of other viola or cello.It’s opus 39 no.1 to no.3. And this is quite the first one I heard and only three of Boccherini’s hundreds of quintet and quartet with this formation, although people will ask, why as a string instrument, contre bass seems left out of competition in string quartet.

As pointed out from many reviewers in Amazon, this is a delightful piece. Full spirit of chamber music. The additional bass can be two things. One this is nowhere we can heard the dominant bass as in the composer like to say,’Hey, here the bass.” But this is more a smooth background bass-ing around and of course sometimes a great bassing line plays a bit. So overall the three works is basically a integrated normal string quintet. And like many of Boccherini’s the main point is the melody line which is creative and beautiful.

The quintet sets close by a miniature string quartet Op.44 no.4 La tiranna. The title quickly suggested about some Espanola here and it’s obvious this is the case. From the first opening, the Espanola guitar ‘strumming’ pattern is being used and again a smooth melody flows through the piece from beginning to the end. Breathtaking beautiful pieces.

I strongly recommend this for any Boccherini fans , old or new. For the performer, Ensemble 415 is a group playing period chamber repertoire. They has a website where you can check for their other CD. Somebody mentioned the name 415 referred to the frequency adjusted to chamber setting, instead of the standard A440 Hz.

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