The three great chamber works, the String Quartet, Piano Quintet, and Violin Sonata, were among the very last works that Elgar wrote, composed during an intensive and productive period in 1918 and 1919 whilst living at Brinkwells in Sussex, and under the twin shadows of the horrors of the Great War and the terminal illness of his wife, Alice. The String Quartet was dedicated to the original Brodsky Quartet (the name subsequently taken by the current group when they arrived as students at the Royal Northern College of Music) and was championed by this new Brodsky Quartet from the off, sitting alongside Delius’s Quartet on their debut recording (1984). It has remained a cornerstone of their repertoire ever since. The Brodsky Quartet took theRead more opportunity of the centenary year of both works to perform the String Quartet alongside the Piano Quintet with their frequent co-performer Martin Roscoe, and this recording is a result of that commemoration.
Performances of conspicuous insight, pedigree and power. In the mighty Piano Quintet the Brodskys generate a consistently stimulating rapport with the admirable Martin Roscoe. Theirs is a marvellously cogent conception, ideally paced and splendidly integrated, possessing a dedication, sweep and ardour that betoken a very real identification with this repertoire.