Customer Reviews


8 Reviews
5 star:
 (6)
4 star:    (0)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JS Bach - Brandenburg Concertos
Finally we have John Elliot Gardiner's interpretation's of Bach's famous Brandenburg Concertos.Of all the well known authentic specialists Gardiner is among the last to record them although as he states in the booklet notes,he only conducted concertos 1 and 2 but rehearsed the others with his players.
The results on initial hearing are staggering.Gardiner sets brisk...
Published on 3 Oct 2009 by r.b.

versus
2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars HIPster Wars - News from the Bach Front - Communiqué 84
Reader, I'm a masochist. I listened to Jeggy's scratchy, pharisaic, Speedy Gonzales Brandenburgs twice over the past day or so. If I were to review it, a perma-ban would be forthcoming. Thankfully, a get-out-of-Siberia card is at hand with one of the "official" reviews quoted on Amazon.com.

My brothers-in-arms: we are not alone! I feel like a member of the...
Published 10 months ago by Bernard Michael O'Hanlon


Most Helpful First | Newest First

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JS Bach - Brandenburg Concertos, 3 Oct 2009
Finally we have John Elliot Gardiner's interpretation's of Bach's famous Brandenburg Concertos.Of all the well known authentic specialists Gardiner is among the last to record them although as he states in the booklet notes,he only conducted concertos 1 and 2 but rehearsed the others with his players.
The results on initial hearing are staggering.Gardiner sets brisk tempo for the allegro in concerto no 1 for which the horn players do a fantastic job.Natural Horns from the Baroque era are incredibly difficult to play and this is usually a weak point in period instrument recording's but Anneke Scott and David Bentley perform very well indeed here.In concerto no 2 Gardiner sets VERY brisk tempo,perhaps too much so,but the notoriously
hard trumpet part is AMAZINGLY played by Neil Brough,certainly the best i have yet to hear.It's a brilliant performance for which he deserves a medal,especially at those speeds.Concerto 3 to 6 are all played very skillfully too.
How this new period recording of the Brandenburg's will stand up upon repeated listening only time will tell but on first hearing it's truly remarkable.I have never heard concerto's 1 and 2 (always extremely difficult for the brass players) performed so technically well.Although the tempi Gardiner sets is rather too brisk there is no denying that it's also exhilarating.

All in all this is a joyous and lively account of the Brandenburg Concertos which is superbly played and well recorded,if a little dry.There are countless authentic instrument versions available but this one certainly deserves a place in the very top bracket.If you want your Brandenburg's performed more moderate then try the English Concert/Trevor Pinnock or the New London Consort/Philip Pickett but if fast pacing and vitality are your thing then go for Gardiner.

N.B. New notes added 5th June 2010.- After 8 months i have returned to give this recording another listen.I'm still amazed at the playing of the brass players in particular and feel that it deserves 5 stars because of this but i also still feel that the tempi in the allegros of concerto's 1 and 2 in particular are uncomfortably brisk.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Completely agree with r.b., 17 Oct 2009
By 
Teemacs (Switzerland) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This is a truly outstanding rendition of the Brandenburgs, which is saying something, as there are many excellent versions in the field. My picks are 1 and 2, 1 with the wonderfully exuberant horns (the players give every impression of having a great time), and 2 with a brilliant account of the wickedly difficult trumpet part, the best on a natural trumpet I've heard. And you can still hear the recorder! The others are also beautifully played, with bouncy Gardinerish tempi (clearly concertmaster Kati Debretzeni has learned from The Boss).

Arise, go forth, and buy. You won't be disappointed.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Splendid!, 11 Nov 2009
Also completely agree with r.b. Pleasingly, the opening seems less frantic than other versions, but that's not to say that this recording lacks passion or dynamism (when required). The musicians have clearly worked hard in rehearsal & obviously thoroughly enjoy Bach's great work, playing it with effortless virtuosity that expertly mixes verve & excitement with pathos & subtlety.

This is also an excellent recording: the instruments sound detailed, rich & expansive in tone, but never harsh or brittle; the soundstage is open & room-filling with fine separation; & it's always a good sign that a recording is so detailed that you can hear the musicians drawing breath.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent recording, 28 Feb 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The English Baroque soloists, under the skilled leadership of John Eliot Gardiner make this an excellent recording a joy to listen to
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars happy customer !, 15 Feb 2011
By 
A. Sadler (Cheshire UK) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
The approach taken by John Eliot Gardiner,and the musicianship of the English Baroque Soloists, have produced a memorable performance. I am very pleased with my purchase.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 29 Nov 2010
By 
B Carter - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I'd read a number of reviews about this disc, all but one were very favourable. I confess I'mm totally ignorant when it comes to 'classical' music but I am familar with these concertos. Briskly played with energy and an infectious enthusiasm this disc never fails to engage, it's been a favourite Saturday morning breakfast listen since I bought it. The recording of the instruments is particularly good too.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars HIPster Wars - News from the Bach Front - Communiqué 84, 29 Dec 2013
By 
Reader, I'm a masochist. I listened to Jeggy's scratchy, pharisaic, Speedy Gonzales Brandenburgs twice over the past day or so. If I were to review it, a perma-ban would be forthcoming. Thankfully, a get-out-of-Siberia card is at hand with one of the "official" reviews quoted on Amazon.com.

My brothers-in-arms: we are not alone! I feel like a member of the French Resistance who has received a coded broadcast from the BBC.

Blair Sanderson, whoever you are, I enrol you as a member of the Australian Knappertsbusch Association (send me an email). With jubilation in my heart, I've capitalised various words of your philippic.

"Listeners who like their period performances of the music of J.S. Bach to be played AS FAST AS POSSIBLE will rejoice at John Eliot Gardiner's QUICKSILVER set of the Brandenburg Concertos with the English Baroque Soloists, because his NEED FOR SPEED is FULLY INDULGED here. Gardiner's ELECTRIFYING TEMPOS ALMOST PUSH HIS MUSICIANS TO THEIR CAPACITY FOR QUICKNESS AND ACCURACY (BOH = sloppy intonation) and perhaps a bit too much for comfort. For listeners, it may take sitting through the entirety of the Brandenburg Concerto No. 1, and perhaps even part of the Brandenburg Concerto No. 2, to acclimatize to the BRISKNESS (BOH - bonus points accrue here) and to get used to the staccato accentuation. But if this kind of high-energy playing appeals - and there are undoubtedly fans of this SUPER-BRISK (BOH - double bonus points accrue here) style of performing Baroque music - then the set will be appreciated for its other authentic features. Gardiner keeps his forces LEAN and the instrumentation appropriate to its era, and ornamentation and other liberties of interpretation are in keeping with the best scholarship (BOH - how about best musicianship?). This is definitely a historically informed set of the Brandenburgs, which counterbalances any number of other ahistorical performances of the past, which presented these concertos with sluggish tempos, modern instruments, and large string and wind sections that were far from nimble (BOH - that reminds me: my Herbie Soup-o-Meter is due for a service). Gardiner's approach is CHALLENGING AND BRACING, so this set should certainly be heard by anyone who studies these popular works. Whether one can embrace them fully is another matter, but they are definitely EAR-OPENING (BOH - just what we all need) experiences."

Additional commentary is superfluous. One shot, one kill.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


10 of 29 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars "Arise, go forth, and buy. You won't be disappointed." Or Will you?, 17 Nov 2009
MMMMMMMphhhhhhhhhhhh

This baroque rendition does very little for me. I looked forward to listening this piece after a number of very good reviews. To say I was disappointed on first hearing would be harsh, but after repeated tries I can hardly bear to listen to one of my favourite pieces being played supposedly `in the original manner'. Who knows what that was?
Undoubtedly the musicianship is first rate but the notion that the ensemble should be left to do their own thing without guidance during nos 3-6 is a grave mistake in my opinion. The `exuberance' to my ears raises a question of direction, particularly when connected with the difficulty of playing period instruments.
As far as the conducted 1-2 are concerned were they all drunk when it was recorded? It reminds me of Dylan's Rainy Day Women #12&35, apparently recorded in one take in the early hours of the morning with the players in various states of inebriation or otherwise. The horn section sounds very similar! Perhaps this was a thought in Gardiner's mind when he `let it go'? Perhaps he was right and most of the original authentic musicians would have been drunk when performing?
Don't let me put you off buying this as I am probably in a very minor camp as far as my idea of what this should sound like. However, how anyone can compare this favourably to Britten's 1969 effort with the ECO is beyond me as far as interpretation is concerned. For example, the sheer scintillating brilliance of the presto of no. 4. There is also little comparison between David Mason's masterly trumpet with the ECO and Neil Brough's overcooked rendition in no.2.
Just my opinion of course, but this recording is expensive.

Make your own mind up
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Bach, J.S.: Brandenburg Concertos
Bach, J.S.: Brandenburg Concertos by John Eliot Gardiner
Buy MP3 Album£13.39
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews