BUXTEHUDE Membra Jesu Nostri • Harry Christophers, dir; The Sixteen • CORO COR 16082 (61:23 Text and Translation)
After a thorough look at the extensive representation of this work on disc (Fanfare 31:5), we get a reissue of an earlier version first reviewed by colleague Michael Carter (25:5), who described as “a smattering of recordings” a Buxtehude discography that has embraced more than 80 of the 120 cantatas stretching backRead more to 1937, a count that is now up to 90, with more than a dozen versions of some of the more familiar works. This version’s performing forces were almost exactly replicated by Alexander Weimann in that recent disc, with five solo singers, nine string players, and organ (Weimann had eight Baroque string instruments). While Weimann delivered one of the two fastest performances in my collection, Harry Christophers hits the median timing, never a bad thing in ranking any competitive series. The recent solo-voice performances include René Jacobs (both versions), Konrad Junghänel, and Jos van Veldhoven in addition to these two, so that will narrow the field for purists. Otherwise, there are some fine performances among the more recent versions cited in the previous review. If I had to limit my choice to a single version, however, it would be Harry Christophers and his sterling group of soloists.