Previously reissued in DG's mid-price Galleria series, this stunning late-1970s Schubert C major quintet remains a point of reference even in the face of many excellent editions that have graced the catalog over the past 30 years. The Melos Quartet was at its technical and expressive peak, obviously inspired by Mstislav Rostropovich's commanding yet truly collegial presence in the second cello chair. Vocal sensibility and contrapuntal awareness inform every phrase, to the point where even the Scherzo's slashing accents and the Finale's rustic drive suggest healthy, well-trained lungs and larynxes rather than bow arms. Similarly, the conversational qualities that the musicians bring to the firstRead more movement circumvent the music's longeurs (they observe the long exposition repeat). The broadly paced Adagio movement features accompanying sustained strings that provide a gentle, haunting backdrop to the cello's pizzicatos, while the players' tempered approach to the central minor-key section contrasts to the pent-up fury you hear in the Auryn/Poltéra recording on Tacet and in Rostropovich's remake with the Emerson Quartet. DG's closely detailed yet warm analogue engineering sounds better than ever. A classic.
Quintet Shines in Radiant PerformanceMarch 30, 2012By Patricia W. (Greenville, WI)See All My Reviews"This performance would seem to be just what Schubert had in mind when writing his Quintet in C Major. The players take time to taste the exquisite harmonies found in this work while keeping the inner rhythm constantly moving forward. Rostropovich's gleaming cello adds great depth to an equally rich sounding Melos Quartet. The seond movement is equisite. All in all, a profoundly moving performance."Report Abuse