"This superb foursome - Ian Humphries and Darragh Morgan (violins) , Nic Pendlebury (viola) and Deirdre Cooper (cello) - celebrate their 20th year with the release of another excellent portfolio from Philip Glass. The highly respected Quartet is well-known for its championing of new works and ongoing collaborations with a wide range of artists. CD1 here, however focuses on three principle quartets; the soundtrack-based Mishima, the dramatic Company and the tribute to artist Brian Buczak. CD2 contains stirring cyclical movements from String Quartet No. 1 and standout String Quartet No. 5. Simply timeless, emotive and brilliant in execution from start to finish."
Musician Magazine - 2008
"...As with the other performances you feel that the Smith Quartet have lived and breathed this music.
The set is well presented and the whole effect is very pleasing..."
MusicWeb.com - August 2008
"...The Smith Quartet’s thoughtful and measured performance allows subtle metric, linear and textural features to rise unassumingly to the surface, enhanced on this recording by a clear, balanced stereo image, and played with characteristic precision and projection by the ensemble...."
Pwyll ap Siôn
Gramophone - June 2008
"How long before the Kronos is labelled the ’American Smith Quartet’? The Smiths must be heartily narked at always being compared to their American colleagues when, arguably, they are ahead of the curve at generating new repertoire and taking the experimental back-catalogue seriously. A case in point is this fine survey of Philip Glass’s string quartets. The first quartet, which was written shortly after the composer’s student days, is rarely played but gives an intriguing early glimpse of his trademark repetitions emerging from behind a darkly expressionist soundworld. The second quartet, Company, is the Glass quartet everyone knows, but the rest are equally worthwhile: neo-Bachian purity and idiosyncratic harmonic shifts in abundance." *****
Classic FM Magazine - June 2008
"Sometimes described as Britain’s answer to the Kronos Quartet, the Smiths are well-versed in the chamber music of Philip Glass, which thus far amounts to five works over 25 years (after his withdrawal of three earlier pieces). Drawing on influences from Bach to Shostakovich, as well as the worlds of dance, theatre and film so conspicuous throughout his output, Glass weaves filigree tapestries given polished, finely detailed airings by the virtuoso Brits. The third quartet, ’Mishima’, offers an especially fine glimpse of distant horizons reduced to a minimalist perspective."
The Observer - 9 March 2008
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