on 31 March 2014
Is there anything the Takacs Quartet play which does not intellectually stimulate, emotionally perturb ( in the best sense), and spiritually elevate? This is a phenomenal recording, which doesn't just demand to be heard, but to be listened to again and again in order to absorb the full impact of the passionate and committed playing - the profoundly spiritual and unflinching interpretations (from first track to last) - the intricacies of the sound-picture, so beautifully captured (Hyperion does it again!!) - and surely performances that BB (the sternest critic) would have been proud of. You can almost sense Britten's failing health in the 'Solo' of the 3rd Quartet, and it knocked me utterly sideways...like no performance or recording before. Please, please, buy this CD.
on 21 November 2013
This CD has been widely lauded by critics and for good reason. It is a superb recording by an unparalleled Quartet. The Takacs make it seem as if the music could be played in no other way; I have their late Beethoven quartets which surpassed and replaced other versions I had. I don't know Britten's three quartets yet but I feel as if I'm in the best possible hands to introduce me: if they're playing them, then they must prove rewarding. The initial steps on my listening journey certainly inspire every confidence and challenge my reliance on the Arditti and Kronos Quartets for great modern classics.