Brandenburg Concertos

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Brandenburg Concertos

Trevor Pinnocks recording with the English Concert is incredibly enjoying. One of the most musical performances I have listened to. It was a real ear-opener for this well-known music.There are an uncountarble number of recordings of this music, but I am very interested to listen to Harnoncourts recording some day.Harnoncourt also have this ear-opening quality.

 

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

Those are two that I could recommend...Harnoncourt, the more quirkish...though my favorite remains OAE (Orchestra Of The Age Of Enlightenment).

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

Has anybody heard the new Chailly set? I'm quite intrigued...

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

It's getting hard to keep up with new recordings of the Brandenburg concertos.

For a long time my favourite was by the 1959 recording by the Bath Festival Chamber Orchestra & Menuhin, on EMI - partly because it's good, but mainly, I suspect, because it was one  of the first classical LPs I bought and it's surprising how much 'sentimental value' can influence your appreciation of something. 

The Musica Antiqua Köln recording in the late 80s eventually took its place, perhaps just because it was so different to the Menuhin - an in-your-face 'New World' chardonnay to Menuhin's more refined chablis. Or something like that.

But that's lately been supplanted by the Il Giardino armonico version.  Or maybe the Concerto Italiano & Alessandrini one. Both are period instrument, neither is afraid to take things at quite a lick where it seems right, but to be more measured when that's demanded by the music, both have clarity without being clinical. If asked at gunpoint, I think the Il Giardino armonico would shade it.

That said, I don't yet have the Orchestra of the Age of Enlightenment recording, which seems to get very good reviews... I really must rectify that shortcoming soon.

So much music, so little time :-)

"Louder! Louder! I can still hear the singers!"

- Richard Strauss to the orchestra, at a rehearsal.

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

I find most modern Brandeburg concerto recordings just too fast and heartless. Doesn't anyone like this music any more? I, too, grew up with the Menuhin set, and I have also come to like and admire the set with Otto Klemperer conducting members of the Philharmonia.

I must confess that, for me, the "baroque sound" that was all the rage from the 1980s onwards, has palled somewhat. Good that 12 year old boys have now been ejected from trying to sing the soprano line in Bach cantatas, and that singers in Bach and Handel are again allowed to use vibrato rather than to try to sound like young boys. Some time soon violinists will again be allowed to warm their tone with a little vibrato -- as they have been doing for at least the past 110 years.

H. Collier

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

Agree with hcollier: can't abide period instrument versions. Would go with Britten/English Chamber Orch or Munchinger/Stuttgart CO's last & lusciously recorded set.

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

I agree as to the excellence of the Pinnock set, with the mind-blowing harpsichord playing in the 5th. However, whatever versions you have, they should be supplemented with the Casals sets of both Brandenburgs and Suites: genuinely legendary and unreplicable readings, historic in the true sense.

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

My favourite is the Jordi Savall recording with Le Concert des Nations. Perfectly judged tempi from Savall and his team of players are superb. The acoustics lend a natural warmth to the period instruments, something I found lacking with the Il Giardino Armonico - Antonini recording. They play with gusto but it's more suited to Vivaldi than Bach, in my opinion.

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

Egarr's relatively new set is marvelous! He avoids the extremely quick tempos of other period instrument groups and finds wonderful detail and nuance. Give it a try!

richardactor

RE: Brandenburg Concertos

With Eliot Gardiner's performance on TV last night in the Prom interval I found the sound virtually unlistenable, but then I first heard my Bach in a different age and have not been converted to such scrawny sounding performances.

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