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Posts Tagged ‘Johannes Brahms’

As an amateur music lover with only a spotty control of the repertoire, it always amazes me when it turns out that a composer whom I’ve come to know via the big works–his symphonies, for example–excels in the small stuff as well.

The Quartetto Italiano does Brahms proud on this Philips Duo recording of his complete string and clarinet quartets. Brahms the late Romantic composer sounds almost modern in these tight, diminutive, four-pieces. Something of the Modernist angst comes in to complement the celebratory reflex of Romanticism itself. One senses that we stand here at the hinge of two artistic eras. (more…)

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In the mid-90s, London’s Sunday Times produced a cheap CD series that managed to be both eclectic and excellent. In the ‘Classical’ branch of that series, High Romantics appeared, presenting tuneful offerings from Glinka, Arensky, Liszt, Saint-Saëns, Brahms, Grieg, Delibes, and Tchaikovsky.

It all adds up to 43 minutes of fine listening, by about minute 22 of which one begins to wonder why we ever moved on from the Romantic period.

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