This is the second installment in the Pacifica Quartet’s highly anticipated, four–volume CD survey of the complete Shostakovich string quartets: The Soviet Experience: String Quartets by Dmitri Shostakovich and his Contemporaries. Volume 2 features five works from the period surrounding World War II: 1938–1949. Included are Shostakovich’s surprisingly sunny and spring–like Quartet No. 1; his often symphonic–sounding Quartet No. 2; the emotionally–powerful Third Quartet, one of Shostakovich’s greatest chamber music masterpieces; his Fourth Quartet, notable especially for its “Jewish” – themed finale; and Prokofiev’s folk–influenced Quartet No. 2.