JOACHIM RAFF (1822-1882): Chamber Music, Vol. 1 - String Quartets No. 1 in D, Op. 77 and No. 2 in A, Op. 90.
Catalogue Number: 02W042
Reference: 307 2187-2
Description: We’ve had both these quartets before, on Tudor and cpo but the latter disc is out of print and only Nos. 1 and 7 are still available on Tudor, so maybe this is the series which will finally give us the Fifth eventually. The first quartet (1855) has a first movement right out of early Brahms and a fairy-type Mendelssohian scherzo followed by a surprising slow movement whose dissonances and suspensions seem to point ahead to Verklärte Nacht before ending in a finale reminiscent of Schubert in a contrapuntal fever. The second (1857) has stylistic traits similar to Mendelssohn (as in much early Raff) throughout its four-movement, 37-minute length as well as the expected marvellous melodic invention with the cello being gifted with lovely solo melodies in two of the movements. Leipzig String Quartet.