Rued Langgaard: String Quartets Vol. 1
11 April 2012
Brilliant, troubled Rued Langgaard (1893-1952) raged against Carl Nielsen, believing his compatriot's work to represent all that was wrong in Danish music, but his own wasn't without its eccentricities - from the vast Music of the Spheres
, heard at the Proms two years ago, or his six-minute Symphony No 11
, a treat rumoured to be coming to the Albert Hall this year. The string quartets are the product of his turbulent youth, so it is fitting that they should be played by Denmark's new star quartet, the Nightingale, who are still in their early 20s (and contestants in last week's international string quartet competition at Wigmore Hall). They have an uncanny affinity with Langgaard's wildly moody music and conjure plenty of exquisite moments on this surprisingly rewarding recording.