Music and Vision homepage

Record Box

Rhythmic invention

The string quartets of
David Arditti, reviewed by

Menelik    CDR

David Arditti: String Quartets Nos 1 and 2. Ludamus; Bingham Quartet. © 1998,2003 David Arditti

David Arditti is a London-based composer, born in 1964, with a substantial list of works to his credit, many of which are vocal and choral settings of British and American poets. His music, particularly as represented by these Quartets, is extremely conservative, a latter-day contemporary of the rich crop of English composers flourishing in the 1880s, Sullivan, Smyth, Somervell, resourceful within its range of experience, technically accomplished and pleasing enough to hear, though offering no appreciably stimulating challenge today to either listener or player.

His Quartet No 1 is Op 7 followed several groups of songs, a Requiem and a Comic Overture for orchestra, and suggests Dvorák in three short and rather sombre movements before a bright finale [listen -- track 4, 0:13-1:05]. The best of Quartet No 2 (Op 31) is a set of variations on 'an invented folk-song' not too far distant from Thomas Moore's famous Last Rose [listen -- track 8, 0:00-0:40], and of the six variations, the fourth is an appealing and clever bit of rhythmic invention [listen -- track 8, 4:34-5:29].

It is to be hoped that Arditti's sound technical foundation in composition will soon lead to the exploration of more courageous harmonic and structural horizons, for whilst there may be a transient audience for his work as it is, it needs greater bold purpose to hold attention.

Continue to Joe Wiedemann review >>

Copyright © 27 December 2003 Patric Standford, Wakefield UK


David Arditti: String Quartets Nos 1 & 2

CDR Stereo NEW RELEASE 45'19" 1998,2003 David Arditti

Ludamus (Quartet No 1); Bingham Quartet (Quartet No 2)

David Arditti (born 1964): String Quartet No 1 in D minor Op 7; String Quartet No 2 in G minor Op 31


 << Music & Vision home      Recent CD reviews       Todd Goodman >>

Download a free realplayer 

For help listening to the sound extracts here,
please refer to our questions & answers page.

Record Box is Music & Vision's regular series of shorter CD reviews