Ames Piano Quartet Classical


Amara Piano Quartet CD Cover

Track Listing

  • Mozart Quartet in E-Flat Major, KV452
  • Hummel Quartet in G-Major
  • Beethoven Quartet in E-Flat Major, Op. 16

"The long-established and estimable Ames Quartet is at the top of its formidable game here, offering interpretations that are unabashedly cast in a big-boned romantic vein, with leisurely tempi and a deeply sonorous, lustrous instrumental sound. The Mozart is given a weighty Beethovenian interpretation that is the very antithesis of period-instrument practice. But then, Mozart's marvelous music can blossom equally well under either approach, and one can embrace both without having to choose between them. The recorded sound is equally plush, and the booklet provides detailed and informative notes.

This is the only performance I can locate for this arrangement of the Mozart. While there are about 10 other performances of this version of the Beethoven presently in print, including such formidable competitors as the Nash Ensemble and the freelance frequent foursome of Isaac Stern, Jaime Laredo, Yo-Yo Ma, and Emmanuel Ax, this gorgeous rendition can hold its own against any of them. There is one competing performance of the Hummel, on a Naxos CD that pairs it with other chamber pieces by that composer and features a fortepiano rather than a modern instrument. However, unless collecting more Hummel is your priority, this disc simply can't be beat for its pervasive sense of Gemütlichkeit, bonhomie , and joie de vivre ; highly recommended."