Bartók’s second violin concerto did not have its premiere in his home country of Hungary, maybe because of the composer’s concerns about the growth of fascism there. It was going to be Amsterdam that had the honour, under Willem Mengelberg, in 1939.
Bartók wanted a series of variations instead of the standard three parts. The violinist to play it however wanted the more traditional three parter. In the end Bartók got his way as well: it is three parts, sure, but the second part is a series of variations.
A nice recording, well worth the effort. Bartók might not be for the faint of heart, but keep trying if you don’t succeed at first.