Saturday, May 21, 2011

Johannes Brahms - The Complete Quintets - Haas, Berlin Philharmonic Octet

 


 

 

 

 

Review:

This outstanding CD collects all four of Brahms' Quintets as performed by pianist Werner Haas and/or members of the Berlin Philharmonic Octet from the early 1970s. Composers are generally known for their large-scale orchestral works. When you think of Brahms, what comes to mind? 4 large symphonies, 2 pianoimage concertos and a violin concerto. All huge works, worthy successors to Beethoven. Yet these all came relatively late in Brahms' career. His true love was a more pure form of music and in fact his chamber pieces far outnumber the larger works. Brahms was heavily influenced by folk music, which he regarded as  the essence of true music. Folk themes come through in these pieces, either Austrian lieder or the pseudo-Hungarian motifs so popular in Vienna in the latter half of the 19th century. This brings a certain enchanting simplicity to these works, easy on the palate with no bitter aftertaste. 

 

flac, scans

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