Pleyel Prussian Quartets Nos. 1-3

When Frederick William II became King of Prussia in 1786, many German composers paid the cello-playing monarch tribute with dedicated compositions. One of the first gifts to arrive was a set of twelve quartets by Ignaz Pleyel. With this release, the Pleyel Quartett Köln continues their traversal of the “Prussian” quartets.

Although similar in style to his contemporaries Haydn and Mozart, in comparison Pleyel’s quartets seem to have a stripped-down simplicity. The melodies have an elegant balance to them, moving in a logical fashion from cadence to cadence. Pleyel might not be breaking new ground with these works, but there’s enough originality to make them worthy of repeated listening.

The Pleyel Quartett Köln continues the same high quality of performance they established with the previous releases in this series. Their period instruments give the works a somewhat soft sound, especially on the unison attacks. The players nicely balance classical reserve with expressive energy, which I think adds to the attractiveness of the works. My only complaint is that the ensemble seems to be recorded a little too distantly (with no room ambiance to compensate).

CPO began this series with quartets Nos. 7-9, then released Nos. 4-6. Perhaps Nos. 10-12 will follow shortly. I, for one, am looking forward to the completion of Pleyel’s attractive coronation gift.

Ignaz Pleyel: “Prussian” Quartets Nos. 1-3, Ben 331-333
Peyel Quartett Köln
CPO

More Recent Posts

  • Heinichen Masses show Italian Influences

    This release features the final two surviving masses of Johann David Heinichen, written in 1728 the year of his death. Heinichen spent several years Venice learning the Italian style, and it shows. When he returned to Germany in the employ of the Crown Prince of Saxony, he wrote Italianate operas and other large-scale choral works. […]

  • July 4 Gather ‘Round: LIVE Bluegrass with Max Wareham & The Morning Bugle

    Gather ‘Round each Saturday night from 8-9 for WTJU Folk‘s concert series; both archived and live. There will be shows from The Prism Coffeehouse and VA Folklife archives mixed in with some from our announcers’ own libraries. And you never know when a live concert might pop up!  91.1 FM around Charlottesville, 102.9 FM down […]

  • Finely-Crafted Symphonies by JCF Bach

    Johann Christoph Friedrich Bach never enjoyed the fame of his siblings Carl Philipp Emanuel and Johann Christian. Yet he was indeed a son of Johann Sebastian Bach. While his music may not be as innovative as his brothers’ it is well-crafted and creatively rich. The three symphonies on this album come from different phases of […]

  • This website is now officially award-winning

    WTJU is the recipient of TWO awards from the Virginia Association of Broadcasters this year: Best Website and Best Station Promo (both in the “non-commercial radio” category). Like our trophies? We certainly are pretty proud of our website, which was built by Vibethink and maintained by Lewis Reining and WTJU mega-volunteer Pete Yadlowsky. The winning […]

  • New Jazz Adds – 6/28/2015

    New Jazz Adds – 6/29/2015 Beat Function – Olympus (Do Music): As described by Amazon, Beat Funktion is a Swedish jazz-funk band that honors “the roots of ’70s funk, groove, soul, disco and afro-beat jazz”. On this trip, they’ve included a tour of Olympus which includes some funky disco groove and introduces listeners to the […]

  • New Blues & Soul News – 6/26/2015

    New Blues and Soul News – 6/25/2015 New Blues Adds: Gaye Adegbalola & The Wild Rutz – Is It Still Good To Ya? (Self-produced): Gaye Adegbalola returns to the “roots” with a substantially a cappella offering with her group “The Wild Rutz” and it is a winner! It has acoustic warmth and the great poignant […]