The brilliant, Technicolor recordings of the Pavel Haas Quartet have won it an impressive array of awards since its inception in 2002. More will surely follow for this latest excursion into the works of Dvořák. The playing is breathtakingly good, each performer maintaining their own personality and yet working together to conjure a special magic, whether in the sparkling “furiant” of the piano quintet No 2 in A major, Op 81 (with Boris Giltburg at his most mercurial), or the dreamy, song-like opening movement of the string quintet in E flat major, Op 97, redolent of the wide-open spaces of rural Iowa. Highly recommended.
Stephen Pritchard has written on classical music for most of his 45 years in journalism. He was the Observer's first readers' editor, and prior to that was a managing editor and production editor