The Aquarelle Guitar Quartet is a dynamic and innovative ensemble known for its expansive repertoire and groundbreaking work in developing the guitar quartet medium. Of this album, focussing on the music of Spain, the Quartet writes: ‘Spain is the spiritual home of the classical guitar, and its music makes an irreplaceable contribution to the instrument’s repertoire... Our own homage to this country’s musical tradition is made up of four works that span 182 years in composition and are inspired by centuries of music.’ The Grand Solo by the virtuoso guitarist and composer Fernando Sor has here been skilfully arranged by Sergio Assad. Based on Spanish folk tunes, Capriccio espagnol by Rimsky-Korsakov is a colourful and flamboyant work that suggests a strong Mediterranean character. The piano works of Isaac Albéniz are particularly suited to arrangement for guitar, and the late impressionistic work La Vega, recorded here, is no exception. Folías by Ian Krouse represents one of the oldest musical themes on record, ‘La folia’, which means mad or empty-headed, possibly due to its connection to a fast and noisy dance in which participants seemed out of their minds.
“.. You can hear that there are four guitars because they seem to be sitting in a row across the front of the stage. Their sound is always well balanced, I fully enjoyed this recital of music about Spain from the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries and think readers will like it as well. ..”
Maria Nockin – Fanfare – May/June 2014
“… As with the AGQ’s previous three albums, not only are the playing and overall ensemble razor-sharp but every tone colour available to a guitarist is exploited to the full …”
William Yeoman – Gramophone magazine – January 2014
",,, ’Cuatro’ is perhaps the Aquarelle Guitar Quartet’s finest recording to date an a worthy tribute not just to the music of Spain but to the true srt of the guitar quartet."
Robert Levett - International Record Review - January 2014