This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
Notes and Editorial Reviews
Gentle, elegiac performances that one can hardly imagine being done more sensitively.
Harold Wright, who died last year, was a long- serving and much respected principal with the Boston Symphony Orchestra and with the dependent Boston Chamber Players. He had the quality which all great orchestral players possess, and which all beginners must first study to learn, which is how to listen. The closeness of sympathy between him and the string players is doubtless the product of many years of musical companionship, but that 'orchestral' quality of being aware of everything that is happening with every other player and the 'chamber' quality of mutually exploring music as if anew combine here to make beautiful performances.
The two works have in common something that Brahms had clearly observed in Mozart, namely how the clarinet is not simply the soloist with accompaniment but how its tonal qualities can enhance the textures and enrich the middle registers and sing in duet with different string instruments.
Wright and the first violin, Malcolm Lowe, share phrasing and a warmth and sweetness of tone, in Brahms's Quintet especially, in a manner that one can hardly imagine being more sensitively done. This is a gentle, elegiac performance, but also one of proper intelligence: it pays careful attention to the all-permeating theme of the falling third with which Brahms binds all his diverse invention together, never overstating but quietly bringing it out until the natural outcome is for the first theme of all to round the work off. Mozart's Quintet is also played in reflective vein, with liveliness in the minuet and finale restrained to bright textures and springing rhythms rather than anything more superficially exciting; and the Larghetto is sung with a romantic warmth that keeps within classical bounds. The recording is properly responsive to the details of texture, close enough for a few intakes of breath to be heard. Much to be recommended.
-- John Warrack, Gramophone [9/1994]
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