single play; Haydn: String Quartets Op 33 Nos 1, 2 & 4 Lindsay Quartet (ASV CD 937)

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The Independent Culture
The Lindsay String Quartet may not be one of the world's most super-polished ensembles - leader Peter Cropper's intonation tends to falter at moments of high excitement - but the vitality and intelligence that these four players bring to Haydn's music are exceptional.

Listening to some performances of the great Haydn quartets, one can feel excluded - surely this is musicians' music, fully comprehensible only to those who are prepared to grapple with the notes? There's some truth in that, but the Lindsays manage to communicate enough of the intellectual subtlety and sheer joy of the writing to make this disc captivating from the start of Op 33 No 1 (one of Haydn's boldest harmonic games) to the deft little joke with which No 4 signs off.

The recordings put the listener close to the players (the best place to be, according to Hans Keller), but not too close, and with no loss of atmosphere.

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