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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breaking point
A handful of Bachs served in less than an hour and by the lady herself, gorgeous Czech mezzo soprano Magdalena Kozená. Those are promising prospects, if you ask me.
As soon as this new CD opens, with Johann Christoph Bach's enormously expressive 'Ach, dass ich Wassers g'nug hätte', threatening to come off at the seams by way of sheer passionate...
Published on 22 Feb. 2005 by Michael Bo

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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag
This new recording is a mixed bag in a number of senses. In a positive sense, it offers a collection of pieces by members of the Bach family not generally so well known as the work of Johann Sebastian, who is also included on the disc. The disc covers some of the same ground as excellent recent discs by Andreas Scholl (Kantate) and Peter Harvey and Johanette Zomer (Death...
Published on 26 Jan. 2005


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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breaking point, 22 Feb. 2005
By 
Michael Bo (Frederiksberg Denmark) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lamento - Bachiana III (Audio CD)
A handful of Bachs served in less than an hour and by the lady herself, gorgeous Czech mezzo soprano Magdalena Kozená. Those are promising prospects, if you ask me.
As soon as this new CD opens, with Johann Christoph Bach's enormously expressive 'Ach, dass ich Wassers g'nug hätte', threatening to come off at the seams by way of sheer passionate melancholy, you feel engrossed in this music, at the edge of your seat. Dynamically Kozená challenges the music almost to breaking point, and purists might, just might, want to discuss whether this is the exact idiomatic way to handle this music, but whichever way you look at it, is is deeply moving.
Not all the rest of the material on the CD lives up to the spectacular opening. It doesn't seem at all self-evident what to do with Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach's bland 'Selma', a piece that was even written for a higher soprano than Kozená's. Johann Christoph Friedrich's almost Mozartian 'Die Amerikanerin' is hardly great music either.
The lamento, the poignancy of Johann Sebastian Bach's arrangement of Conti's Catholic 'Languet anima mea' has immediacy, healthy energy and lovely detail, and is, like everything else on the CD, marvellously sung and interpreted in a highly individualistic fashion. Listen to the aria 'Tu lumen mentis es' with Kozená in dialogue with gut-strings that have truly been blessed from above. As usual conductor Reinhard Goebel and his ensemble never caress you with their sound, but rather emphasize musical issues eloquently, so you are seduced, almost unwillingly.
I hardly need to make a case for Johann Sebastian Bach's 'Vergnügte Ruh', also included here. You can disagree with tempi here, but it is great music, done with wonderful pathos and urgency.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Mixed bag, 26 Jan. 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Lamento - Bachiana III (Audio CD)
This new recording is a mixed bag in a number of senses. In a positive sense, it offers a collection of pieces by members of the Bach family not generally so well known as the work of Johann Sebastian, who is also included on the disc. The disc covers some of the same ground as excellent recent discs by Andreas Scholl (Kantate) and Peter Harvey and Johanette Zomer (Death and Devotion) in offering devotional music by the likes of Johann Sebastian's precursor Johann Christian. Kozena is in typically fine voice and offers affecting performences, but the Scholl and Harvey/Zomer discs offer a better surveys of this kind of music overall. Kozena also offers an interesting account of a work by Johann Sebastian's son Carl Philip Emmanuel. What for me makes the work into a mixed bag in a more negative sense is above all the performance of the well-known Johann Sebastian Bach 'Vergnuegte Ruh'' which is the central item on the disc. Kozena sings well enough, but the tempos adopted by her and Musik Antiqu Koeln under Reinhard Goebel are excessively and destractingly fast. Kozena just doesn't get to unfold the picture of heavenly stillness (which is what 'Ruhe' means) that is offered by, say, Scholl and Herreweghe on their disc for Harmonia Mundi. A good enough and an interesting disc, but those who admire Kozena may be disappointed - it fails to pack the kind of revelatory punch that we have come to expect from her in her excellent discs of Handel, French operatic arias, or twentieth-century song.
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3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The BEAUTFUL 'Lamento'...!, 3 May 2012
By 
FAMOUS NAME (UNITED KINGDOM) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
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This review is from: Lamento - Bachiana III (Audio CD)
I love all music; I have from ABBA to X-Ray Spex in my collection - but I also like classical music, though I'm no expert on it. My knowledge is limited, and it might surprise some to know after that statement that the only radio station I ever listen to, is in fact Classic FM - which is where I first heard Ms. Kozena singing the gorgeous 'Lamento' which is the title piece featured for this album.

This is a truly beautiful collection - beautifully arranged, and whilst for the most part I have to be 'in the mood' for listening to classical music to fully appreciate it, I do find I can listen to this anytime.

Having such a broad taste as myself, I've always found it difficult to understand how some people only lend their ears to one type of music; country, pop, rock, heavy-metal - or classical. I guess I'm fortunate that I appreciate all styles, but I would think that this album should - or would appeal to almost anyone and everyone.

This album has certainly encouraged me to look into this lady's back catalogue, and so this has five stars from me!
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2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 5 May 2005
By 
J. Sprackland "sprackyjack" (Southport, UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Lamento - Bachiana III (Audio CD)
It's a painful admission - I'm a real fan of Ms. Kozena - but this is not one of her strongest releases. I'm not technically musical enough to say why it just lacks the spark of most of her previous recordings. If you don't already have them I'd encourage the purchase of her French Arias, Czech songs or recordings of Handel and Bach made with Mark Minkowski before investing in this collection.
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