Like one of the other reviewers, I chose this recording because it was chosen as the best performance of the F minor quartet on BBC Radio 3's Building a Library.
I have been reading quite a lot about Mendelssohn's music and was very keen to hear this string quartet. Mendelssohn is a fascinating person, the grandson of a very famous philosopher and son of a banker. His father once said, "I grew up the son of a famous father and now I will be remembered as the father of a famous son". It is interesting to note that Felix Mendelssohn's own son was a chemical engineer and co-founder of the German Petro-chemical company AGFA.
Mendelssohn was a genius. Not only was he a great composer, he was also a virtuoso pianist, violinist and conductor. He was also a gifted painter and administrator who founded and ran the Leipzig Conservatory.
However, as prodigiously talented a composer as he was, there is a vein of conservatism in his music as if he doesn't wish to offend or challenge his audience.
The main exception is the F minor quartet, which was written after his beloved sister, Fanny, died. The grief he felt made him forget his good manners and write from the heart.
Although I don't have any other recordings to compare with it, I think this recording does the work full justice. I also enjoy listening to the other works on this CD.