ADRIAN JACK (b.1943): String Quartets Nos. 3, 4, 5 and 6 "Serenade", 08.02.01.
Catalogue Number: 05I092
Label: Deux Elles
Reference: DXL 1116
Description: Adrian Jack is a music journalist in England, and although he appears to have legitimate student credentials, these quartets suggest a composer who, not having developed much of a distinct personality of his own has nonetheless adeptly absorbed diverse characteristics from a good proportion of the music he was supposed to be reviewing. For the music of a critic with a long-standing association with contemporary music, this is surprisingly un-Arditti-like territory for the most part, ambling through fragments of conventionally-textured music with little contrapuntal complexity and no innovative playing techniques. Parts of the 5th Quartet indeed could almost be something Vaughan Williams might have jotted down as 'possible accompaniment to something?', expanded to some quarter of an hour. Conventional, then, but not unpleasing, and accessibly familiar-sounding throughout.