This CD is reissued by ArkivMusic.
Notes and Editorial Reviews
Clarity of musical argument without ever losing sight of the poetry of the music.
Although only three of Bach’s violin concertos (BWV1041-3) have been preserved in their original form there were undoubtedly a great many more. Several have survived in later versions as harpsichord concertos while individual movements from lost concertos almost certainly survive within the body of Bach’s cantatas.
As well as the three familiar violin concertos by Bach, Tafelmusik and their soloist/director Jeanne Lamon have included a concerto better known in its version in C major for three harpsichords and strings (BWV1064). The reconstruction by Wilfried Fischer, following the assumption that the work in its original form
was for three violins, transposes the music up a tone to D major – Bach’s normal practice was to transpose his original down a tone to accommodate the harpsichord range. Yet there are still features of this concerto, above all in its conjectural version for three violins, which do not quite ring true. Nevertheless Lamon and her two solo partners, Linda Melsted and David Greenberg, make out as strong a case for accepting the piece as genuine Bach as I have yet heard. The solo strands are admirably clear and well sustained, giving a fair impression of cogent dialogue. Fischer’s reconstruction is not strictly adhered to but that is no bad thing since there are passages, especially in the first movement, which simply do not work convincingly in performance.
The two solo violin concertos and the concerto for two violins have been thoroughly and painstakingly rehearsed and the results are rewarding. Some readers may find Lamon’s tone a little astringent at times but she is also capable of producing a warm sound, especially in the lower part of her tessitura. What I like most about these performances, however, is the way in which she shapes and punctuates her phrases without ever losing sight of the poetry of the music. The finale of the A minor Concerto, for instance, is not the breathless conversation it so often sounds in performance but an articulate exposition of its subtle counterpoint. Indeed, clarity of musical argument is a strong feature of the playing in each of these concertos and it is above all for this that I shall want to hear them many times over. Strongly recommended.
-- Nicholas Anderson, Gramophone [2/1996]
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