What Shostakovich sounds like at half speed

From the Lebrecht Album of the Week:

… The eighth quartet opens at a sepulchral pace, so slow here that it could only be either inept or perverse. As the performance unfolds it becomes apparent that the slowness is intended as protest, both as a reflection of the composer’s feelings and perhaps as a response to COVID constraints. Shostakovich confided in 1960 that he was writing the eighth quartet as his own obituary since no-one else would remember him after death. …

It’s a five-star cracker.

Read on here.

And here.

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