Try this disc. It'll be worth it. Which is not to say that it's not tough going sometimes. Schoenberg's Streichtrio, Op. 49, depicts among other things the composer's heart attack and the needle jabbed into his heart to bring him back to life. And if that's not tough enough, every work on this disc is written in a musical language that is aggressively dissonant and deliberately abrasive. Krenek's Streichtrio, Op. 118, is ironically belligerent and even Webern's Streichtrio, Op. 20, is austerely objective. But try it anyway. The Wiener Streichtrio plays all the works with lucidity and compassion and its performances are completely compelling. The tone is superb. The intonation is superior. The technique is superlative. And the interpretations are sublime. For what it is -- a single-disc compilation of the string trio music of the Second Viennese School -- this disc can't be beat. Calig's 1986 digital recording is as warm and real as the best stereo recordings.
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