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The Complete Works of J.S.Bach (Special Edition) Box set

Price: £134.82 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Product details

  • Orchestra: Gachinger Kantorei, Bach-Collegium Stuttgart
  • Conductor: Helmuth Rilling
  • Audio CD (13 Sept. 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 172
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: HAENSSLER
  • ASIN: B003LR4QPE
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 116,859 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Roland Herrera, Bristol UK on 10 Dec. 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The Bachakademie-Edition, Stuttgart together with Hanssler published this set of complete recordings of JS Bach in the year 2000 (250 years after his life). I had purchased some individual CDs from the set several years ago, (the individual CDs were £16 or around full price) but when this offer came out to purchase the whole set at less than £1 per CD I snatched it! Well, it arrived today, and I can't stop listening! The Cantatas are stellar! I have all Glenn Gould's recordings, Helmut Walcha's, and Karl Richter's 75 Cantatas and several other hundred CDs and recordings of Bach. I have some amazing Bach recordings, but there are none that top these! These are glorious modern instrument performances, thank goodness. I would say they are exactly in the style of Karl Richter and the Bach Munich Orchestra. However, technically they continue where Karl Richter left off. The recordings are digital and better quality, because they are more recent. The playing is perhaps slightly lighter.. the orchestral accompaniments to the cantatas are magnificent... staccato is sprightly played, trumpets soar with clarity and purity, and the singing is unquestionably World Class. Energy and joy radiate from these performances. In short, I don't see how any Bach followers can afford not to have Helmut Rilling's outstanding set. Obviously, I'd say if you are into Historic Instrument Performances, avoid it. However, the tide is turning; finally we can hear Bach played with the full benefit of modern day technology (both in the playing and recording) in all its glory. I have a strong feeling that this fulfilling investment will go down as one of the best purchases of my life.. I'll certainly be listening to it for the rest of my life. Long live JS Bach! I cannot recommend this set strongly enough! Get it and forget everything else!
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By lucas on 7 Aug. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
The box measurements are 41 x 14,5 x 14,5 cm ( roughly 16" x 5"x5" ) . It weighs four kilos (about nine pounds). Just in case the last information is any good for you...

The set contains 172 cds and one cdrom with the equivalent to over a thousand pages with texts of all cantatas, liner notes and more. It is in German, English, French and Spanish. ( They say 5000 pages but considering that those pages consist of the same text repeated in four different languages then the correct information is to say over a thousand pages of texts. This is what you will have in English). The cd rom is compatible with PC and Mac. I have Mac and it seems that not all contents of the cd rom are available for Mac but there is a pdf with all texts for the songs and liner notes . There are detailed indexes in two booklets.

The box is beautiful and elegant. It opens upwards and the cds are colour coded, distributed along three divisions. It is very practical and it is very easy to find out what you are looking for. The cds are in very simple paper cases but I didn't mind that, considering that Hanssler is such a good, old fashioned label that does care about its customers. Unlike Bach's complete works from the giant label Warner, which has zero documentation.

The quality of the sound is very good and, although I prefer period instruments, I like the consistency of having this set where the signature of Helmuth Rilling is in each cd.

When I listened cds from this set without headphones I don't play it loud but birds in trees near the open windows start to sing when I play Bach...
I read once this beautiful poem where the poet , a South American poet called Ferreira Gullar, says something like " Her voice reminds me of a bird but not a bird singing.
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Excellent edition, beautiful box. I like the booklets that describe in detail all the CD. I have just got it, so I have only heard a couple of CD.
It sounded flawless and I'm delighted to have so many hours of great music ahead of me. I can really recommend this box.
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3 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Salvador Almeida on 21 May 2013
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Very good edition, all the Bach compositions at a very competitive price. Very good singers and orchestra. I don't Know any other edition so complete.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 19 reviews
94 of 107 people found the following review helpful
Rilling's Bach: The Good, The Old and the Odd 1 Dec. 2010
By Sue Leigh Waugh - Published on
Format: Audio CD
All indications are that this latest iteration of the hänssler CLASSIC Edition Bachakademie is a gussied up repackaging of the super budget version released in 2004 (and available at one time from Berkshire Record Outlet for just $199.99). The new packaging is an attractive up-grade over the earlier bare bones version but I do not know if that justifies the higher price point.

That said, it has been ten years since the hänssler/Rilling edition saw the light of day. At that time, the folks at hänssler and Warner were engaged in a war of words over whose "Complete Bach" was MOST complete. The hänssler/Rilling edition DID have more discs when completed - but this additional material, not presented in the Warner Bach 2000 consisted primarily of 12 discs of chorales. Lovely? Yes. A legitimate part of Bach's oeuvre? Yes. Yet 12 discs of hymn tunes was not a major incentive for this collector, at least.

Caveat lector! I personally prefer period instrument performances, and while boy sopranos and male falsettists may bother some listeners, the fact IS that this was the sound world that Bach dealt with; these were the musicians he wrote for. It is fighting the straw man to argue that had Bach ACCESS to female singers and modern orchestral instruments, he would have used them. To carry that line of reasoning to its logical extreme, Bach's music should simply just be performed on digital synthesizers.

At the heart of this massive collection are Bach's immortal works for the Lutheran Church - 60 discs of sacred cantatas and about 20 more worth or oratorios, Passions, Missae brevis (Lutheran masses, sans "Credo"), and a handful of smaller individual movements, all under the direction of Helmuth Rilling. Music history should rightly honor Rilling as the FIRST man to the top of the mountain. During the 1960s he was a God, performing obscure and long-forgotten and neglected works by Scheutz, the Bach family and Buxtehude. The recordings of the original Bach Edition were originally made between 1969-1985 and were integrally released in 1985 as part of the Bach Tercentenary. As is well known, Rilling always had the good fortune to work with superlative singers; the orchestras and ensembles are ready to take on most any challenge and the Gaechinger Kantorei deserve to be ranked among the world's great choral ensembles - if only for having learned and performed so much music so beautifully. And yet, in the 30 - 40 years since originally recorded, much has changed. The recordings could certainly do with a little digital remastering (some are extremely bright, while others are rather colorless...). Additionally, Bach scholarship has advanced and some of Rilling's interpretative choices have been superseded by later generations. Still in all, if your taste is for Bach on MODERN instruments, performed at lightening fast speeds - this IS the set you will want.

The organ works are uniformly were played and documented, though their arrangement into "thematic" collections (i.e. "New Ideas in Weimar", "Influences of Cantata, Concerto & Chamber Music", "Not a Note from Bach?" etc.) make it a bit of challenge to find the piece you are looking for.

The recordings of the keyboard works fortunately are fortunately organized by form, collection and idiom and there are some truly wonderful performances. Pinnock's Partitas are outstanding. Robert Levin does a fine job with the English Suites, though his WTC is an odd-ball affair, using at it does an assemblage of harpsichords, chamber organs, clavichords, etc. An interesting concept... and probably worth hearing for that alone. Among the real treasures to discover are the performances of Robert Hill on the Lute-Harpsichord (Lautenwerk). Bach apparently had a sweet-tooth for this hybrid harpsichord and owned a pair himself. Hill performs several works believed to have been written for this instrument as well as a fascinating collection of transcriptions (not all by Bach). Of the recordings that have not aged so well are those by Koroliov. His 2-disc "Golderg" Variations is probably one of the SLOWEST on record. His readings of the French Ouverture/Italian Concerto paring is spare and his Inventions & Sinfonias is fussy. For the last, I would have welcomed another performance from Robert Levin.

As for the chamber music, the two large solo collections (Sonatas and Partitas for Violn/Suites for Cello) are given fine, modern instrument performances by Dmitri Sitkovetsky (who later returns for the Violin Sonatas with keyboard) and Boris Pergamenschikow. The flute sonatas (together with a handful of Trio Sonatas) receive one of the more idiosyncratic treatments in the collection: Jean-Claude Gérard performs on a modern flute, while his continuo partners perform variously on bassoon, cello, harpsichord and Fortepiano. The Three Sonatas for Viola da Gamba are lovingly performed by Hille Perl - though without any companion works on the program, the CD's playing time is just about 38 minutes! Of all the chamber works in this monumental collection, the Musical Offering received one of the finest recordings on disc. Also included on the program are a fascinating set of Canons.

The epic journey ends with the orchestral and concertante works. These are all uniformly acceptable, modern instrument performances. Nothing objectionable and Rilling keeps the tempos brisk.

In summary, the entire collection really hangs on Helmuth Rilling's vision of Bach's works. Either you like his big, plumy choral sound with modern instruments or you don't. He used to be the only game in town but now there are an increasing number of alternatives, at least for the cantatas - Nikolaus Harnoncourt & Gustav Leonhardt on Teldec, Pieter Jan Leusink on Brilliant Classics, Ton Koopman on Antoine Marchand, Masaaki Suzuki on BIS and John Eliot Gardiner on the Soli Deo Gloria label.
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
Little more to say! 18 May 2011
By Michael Capizzi - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I don't think that I can add more of substance on this collection. You either like or dislike modern instruments and you eith like or dislike Rilling's work. For myself, I have been waiting an awefully long time to get this set at a reasonable price. Having purchased the Brilliant complete set a couple of years ago, I really only wanted the sacred cantatas by Rilling and his forces. I would gladly have paid $250 for these alone. To receive the whole of Bach for the same price is a windfall indeed.

My only comment of Rilling vs. more modern approaches is to moan the passage of time. There was a time when Klemperer's recordings rested supreme among Bach sacred works. Now he is considered sluggish and overblown. But then, tastes change.

A note on the packaging. I am a little disappointed that Hassler falls short in the disc sleeves. Where Brilliant provided studry heavy paper sleeves, color coded by type of music, and provided detailed recording information on teh back of each sleeve, Hassler is satisfied to provide thin, black paper sleeves with a clear front to view the disc (of course, Hassler also provides much more documentation elsewhere than does Brilliant).

One recommendation: given 172 discs and black sleeves with no information on them, I suggest you purchase a pack of white sleeves, also with clear fronts, so that you can replace sleeves, black for white, as you listen to the CDs. Doing this offeres a visual record at a glace as to your progress throughout the set.
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Epic and Superb 24 Jan. 2012
By B - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I've found lots of great deals on Amazon over the years, but this is easily the most worthwhile purchase I have made in the last ten years. To record all of Bach is obviously an epic undertaking and Haenssler, Rilling et. al. have rendered us a great service by packaging such sublime music into an astoundingly cheap box set. Listeners know Rilling mostly for his superb renditions of the choral repertory, but will find that the instrumental recordings on offer here are are very good and in some cases equal to the choral works. I've just received my box today and am working my way through the keyboard works; as other reviewers have noted, I myself was a bit dubious about the seeming lack of star quality--I had never heard of Robert Hill, Peter Watchhorn and others and scoffed at the idea that they would hold a candle to the Bach specialists I have in my collection (Goode, Gould and Schiff, among others). While they might not match these others, they are more than competent--I also like that the set includes Bach performed on multiple keyboard instruments (clavichord, harpsichord, modern piano, etc.) as they've done with the Well-Tempered Klavier. Even connosieurs of Bach will find little played gems in this set--there are three CDs alone of early Bach keyboard works which I'd never heard but are fascinating to listen to. If you even like Bach you simply have to get this set. I'd give it six stars if I could.
20 of 24 people found the following review helpful
The only fault: bad documentation 1 Nov. 2010
By Merksamer Israel - Published on
Format: Audio CD
Like the former reviewer, I was waiting for the original edition to become affordable.
After listening to multiple interpretations of the cantatas, and coming back to Rilling after quite a few years, I find his realizations interesting, valid and good. Naturally,one has to bear in mind that they are far from the authentic style.
The other groups were also sampled, and the instrumental and orchestral music is excellently performed, again remembering that the orchestra does not play on authentic instruments. The keybord works are interpreted, for sure, in line with the best.
The only serious drawback is poor hard-copy documentation, and to get the names of the soloists in individual cantatas one has to go to the cd-rom.
19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
A brief note on packaging.... 24 Nov. 2010
By D. J. Krug - Published on
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
For most of us who have been salivating for a rerelease of Hanssler's complete Bach edition, this is a momentous occasion. That being said, the discs are packaged in a flip-top box which is not as sturdy as it could be - careless handling (both in transit and in use) will result in splitting the seams of the box top, which is sad for a set of this caliber and worth. [This is similar to packaging issues on several recent box sets which used similar flip-top boxes, like the Chandos box and the Miles Davis Columbia Album Collection]. I received two in damaged condition and am still working through getting a satisfactory item. Once I do, I plan to revel in the glories of J.S. for all of 2011 (Merry Christmas to me!)...
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