Shostakovich: String Quartet No. 1; String Quartet No. 8; String Quartet No. 9

COMPOSERS: Shostakovich
LABELS: Naxos
WORKS: String Quartet No. 1; String Quartet No. 8; String Quartet No. 9
PERFORMER: Eder Quartet
CATALOGUE NO: 8.550973 DDD
The Eighth acts as a musical and emotional fulcrum within Shostakovich’s cycle of 15 quartets, an unsettling and tortuous work dedicated to ‘the victims of war and fascism’. The Eder Quartet’s pungently visceral encounter is hardly the finest on disc, but like the other performances here, it is consistently argued, and creditably played. Quartet No. 3 followed the Fifth Symphony, though it lacks the asymmetric seriousness of No. 9. Fine sound and a bargain price make this continuing Naxos cycle an enticing proposition. Michael Jameson

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