Britten's string quartets remind me of Shostakovich's late chamber music - string quartet no.13-15, violin sonata and viola sonata - for the intensely personal and inward-looking musical idiom, Britten's musical language is more subtle and ambiguous though. They are amazingly original and comlex, each time you listen to them you discover something new.
Belcea Quartet is an outstanding ensemble. Their performances are technically impeccable, deeply expressive and thoughtful, which reflect their deep understanding of Britten's music and genuine emotional involvement. They create amazing contrast between the evocative atmosphere of the slow movements and the dizzyingly complex fast movements.