This month Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine award top marks and a "Choice" to Nightingale String Quartet's recent Langgaard CD
This month the Nightingale String Quartet has been singled out in the world’s two leading periodicals for classical music, the British Gramophone and BBC Music Magazine, both of which feature a large picture of the four Danish string players along with the high praise. The occasion is the quartet’s new CD Rued Langgaard: String Quartets Vol. 2, released internationally in February this year.
'Choice’ twice running
In Gramophone the young ensemble, consisting of four string students at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen, has won the distinction Choice, the editors’ selection of the month’s ten best among the hundreds of new classical releases from all over the world. It is unusual for an ensemble to be awarded this distinction twice running, but it is in fact the case with the Nightingale String Quartet, who with their debut CD, which was Vol. 1 in the same series, appeared among the Gramophone editors’ favourites last year.
In the running for the BBC Prize
In BBC Music Magazine, the world’s best-selling classical magazine, the Nightingale String Quartet has won double top marks – a so-called “BBC 5 Star” – for artistic and technical quality respectively on their new CD. This distinction is extra important, since it is a precondition of being considered for the BBC Music Magazine Awards, to be awarded next spring. Here too the Danish ensemble is on familiar ground, since with their first Langgaard CD they won both top marks and an actual nomination for the coveted prize.
French, German and Danish agreement
In France and the quartet’s native Denmark the reviewers agree with their British colleagues that the Nightingales’ Langgaard performance is in a class by itself. In France the first review of String Quartets Vol. 2 has just been published in the April issue of the magazine Classica, which awards the top rating of four stars, In Germany, the chamber music periodical "Ensemble" has published a top mark review this month. And in Denmark, where the CD was released in December 2013, the music press agreed that the release was among the best of the year. The major newspapers Berlingske Tidende, Politiken and Information all had the CD among their favourites of the year, and Jyllands-Posten described the CD as “impeccable from start to finish”.
On their way to the finale
How the third and last release in the Nightingale String Quartet’s CD series of Rued Langgaard’s music will fare, time will show. But expectations are high. Gramophone ends its review with the statement “One can only look forward to the final release in this important and worthwhile series.”