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Langgaard: String Quartets V. 1 / Nightingale String Quartet

Langgaard / Nightingale String Quartet
Release Date: 04/24/2012 
Label:  Dacapo   Catalog #: 6220575  
Composer:  Rued Langgaard
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nightingale String Quartet
Number of Discs: 1 
Back Order: Usually ships in 2 to 3 weeks.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews


These are remarkable works. Rued Langgaard was, as we now know, basically nuts. He composed nine string quartets, more or less, because some of them share movements (or revisions of movements). Most date from his early period, the late 1910s and early 1920s, before he turned bitter and was forced to endure the neglect of the Danish musical establishment. They feature a reckless variety of material and encompass a vast expressive range. For example, the titles of the Second Quartet’s four movements are: Storm Clouds Receding; Train Passing By; Landscape in Twilight; and The Walk. The Third Quartet has three movements variously headed Rapacious; Artful (sound sample below); and Scoffing. Some might
Read more feel the music simply falls apart into a series of disconnected episodes. Maybe it does, but it is consistently entertaining, expressive, and curiously moving.

The performances here are marvelous, make no mistake. The Nightingale String Quartet relishes every bizarre nuance, from the chugging locomotive in the Second Quartet to the “Agitato orribilmente” and “Burlesco rustico” sections of the single-movement Sixth Quartet. But the playing never turns crude, and never indulges Langgaard’s wackier ideas at the expense of solid musical values. As if that weren’t enough, the program concludes with a mostly solemn series of variations on the hymn-tune “Oh, Sacred Head, Now Wounded”. Keeping this generally slow music moving purposefully forward is no mean feat, but these players manage it effortlessly. The sonics are warm, well balanced, and strikingly realistic. Langgaard was unquestionably a “character”, but he knew what he was doing. So do these players, and so does Dacapo in standing by him. Try this.

-- ClassicsToday.com
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Works on This Recording

1. Quartet for Strings no 6, BVN 160 "In One Movement on a Swedish Folk Tune" by Rued Langgaard
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nightingale String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1918-1919; Denmark 
2. Quartet for Strings no 2, BVN 145 by Rued Langgaard
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nightingale String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1918/1931; Denmark 
3. Quartet for Strings no 3, BVN 183 by Rued Langgaard
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nightingale String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1924; Denmark 
4. Variations for String Quartet on "O sacred head! now wounded", BVN 71 by Rued Langgaard
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Nightingale String Quartet
Period: 20th Century 
Written: 1915/1940; Denmark 

Sound Samples

String Quartet No. 2, BVN 145: I. Bortdragende Stormskyer (Storm Clouds Receding)
String Quartet No. 2, BVN 145: II. Bortkorende Tog (Train Passing By)
String Quartet No. 2, BVN 145: III. Skumrende Landskab (Landscape in Twilight)
String Quartet No. 2, BVN 145: IV. Vandring (The Walk)
String Quartet No. 3, BVN 183: I. Poco allegro rapinsoso
String Quartet No. 3, BVN 183: II. Presto scherzo artifizioso
String Quartet No. 3, BVN 183: III. Tranquillo
String Quartet No. 6, BVN 160
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Introduction: Solenne sostenuto, lento
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 1: Andante sostenuto
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 2: Poco lento sempre tranquillo
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 3: Lento
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 4: Andante sostenuto - Lento - Andante sostenuto
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 5: Poco allegro tranquillo
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 6: Tranquillo sospirando
Variations on Mig hjertelig nu laenges, BVN 71: Variation 7: Poco allegro maestoso - Allegro fiero - Piu tranquillo

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