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WWE 1CD 20212
Wolfgang Rihm
String Quartets Vol.2
1
String Quartet No. 5 Ohne Titel - schnell, rastlos 06:04
2
- Takt 112 07:58
3
- Takt 269 04:22
4
- G.P: (Takt 352) 11:34
5
String Quartet No. 6 Blaubuch - schnell und frei 10:04
6
- meno mosso, zögernd und stockend 14:10
7
- wieder schnell 10:10
8
- Takt 620 12:47
Total Time 01:17:09
That the two single-movement string quartets No. 5 (“Ohne Titel”) and No. 6 (“Blaubuch”), composed in 1981/83 and 1984, belong to the most passionate of Rihm’s quartets is due to their restless vigor. This impulsive approach is of course always present in his music. But even the tempo indications “fast, restless” and “fast und free” suggest a certain stringency - which is fully realized in the pieces. A sense of inner disquiet pulls the listener like a maelstrom into a sea of commotion, of structures overlaying one another and of constant movement and flurry. There are points of rest in both pieces. But even those seem to push forward, echoing more turbulent passages, or so it seems at least. In a sense, these peaceful segments stop moving tonally, once they have ground to a halt. But it does not take long for the maelstrom to gain the upper hand again, and for the pushing forward to resume. When once asked why he composes and what he wants to achieve in his music, Rihm said that he wanted to “move and be moved”. This is precisely what happens in the quartets recorded here with almost eerie vehemence.
Recommendation
The diversity of the seemingly incompatible: Points, contrasts and shapes of sound in Rihm’s string quartets Nos. 10 and 12 and the Quartettstudie. 
Number 4 of the Salzburg Festival “Kontinent” series was dedicated to Wolfgang Rihm. We have compiled a selection of the works for your convenience – including a first recording! 
In his Dis-Kontur and Sub-Kontur, the young Rihm strongly revolted against the emotional coolness he en-countered in the style of the musical avant-garde. 
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