Related Reviews
Limelight Magazine
5 Stars
'To love Bruckner is to love this CD.'
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American Record Guide
'[The Intermezzo] is an interesting, charming movement that stands well on its own.'
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The Bruckner Journal
'...a performance that sounds absolutely wonderful...The deeply felt lyrical passages with which this music abounds, in this performance should melt the stoniest of hearts...'
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BBC Music Magazine
5 Stars
'Tender warmth radiates from page after page, dialogue between the voices emerges with keen, intimate intensity. The great Adagio is as exalted and touching as it should be. All round a fascinating, rewarding disc.'
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Fanfare Magazine
'The playing articulates with great subtlety the Romantic abundance of Bruckner's slow movements-the Adagio to the quintet is especially gorgeous-while not shying away from the bizarre and kinky writing in the scherzos and finales and in the Intermezzo. Linn's recording and the acoustic of the recording venue are ideal.'
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Herald Scotland
'What's intriguing in these outstanding performances by the Fitzwilliam Quartet with guest violist James Boyd are the myriad seedbed elements to be heard in the early String Quartet, and just how effectively the colossal Bruckner sound translates into a chamber music idiom in the Quintet.'
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'The relaxed swing they bring to the Scherzo and Trio recalls the Fifth like no previous recording...'
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4 Stars
« Deux beaux témoignages de musique pure jaillie de l'imagination d'un artiste, dont les imperfections formelles - étonnant paradoxe - confinent presque toujours à la beauté. »
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MusicWeb International
Recording of the Month: '...their hushed close to the Adagio of the Quintet is exquisite.'
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Fitzwilliam String Quartet - Bruckner: Quintet & Quartet - AllMusic

01 January 2016
Blair Sanderson

Newcomers to the symphonies of Anton Bruckner often find them to be daunting works that demand considerable time, concentration, and erudition. However, a much easier entry point to his music can be found in the String Quintet in F major and the String Quartet in C minor, which have long been overshadowed by the many recordings of the symphonies in their various versions and editions, though increasing availability on CD has made them much more familiar. Characteristics that are well-known in the symphonies -- insistently repeated rhythms, somber chorales, and dramatic fanfares -- are missing in Bruckner's chamber music, though the fluid counterpoint, expansive melodies, rich harmonies, and intricate modulations that make the symphonies so fascinating can be found in the Quintet, and to a less developed degree in the Quartet. Essentially, these pieces and the intervening Intermezzo in D minor present Bruckner in a more manageable form, and the lucid performances by the Fitzwilliam String Quartetmake the music immediately intelligible and appealing. Joined by violist James Boyd in the Quintet, the ensemble produces a warm and radiant sound that dispels any worries of Brucknerian complexity, and even in the pensive Quartet, the playing is ingratiating and quite evocative of Schubert, a key influence in early Bruckner. While these performances are exceptional in technique and expression, the church setting gives the group too much resonance for the intimate nature of the music.    
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