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Bach J.S: Cantatas Vol. 6 Double CD

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Conductor: Gardiner
  • Composer: Bach J.S
  • Audio CD (1 Oct. 2007)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Format: Double CD
  • Label: SDG
  • ASIN: B000VR054I
  • Other Editions: MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 107,508 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Cantatas for the Twelfth Sunday Trinity - Johann Sebastian Bach
  2. Cantata for the Thirteenth Sunday Trinity - Johann Sebastian Bach

Product Description

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Top Customer Reviews

By DAVID BRYSON TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 13 Mar. 2008
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Bach used to inscribe his cantatas `S.D.G.', which is `soli Deo gloria' or `glory to God alone'. It is well known that he had little reason to appreciate the musical resources, human and material, at his disposal, but these days we are a lot better off. Gardiner's pilgrimage through the cantatas calls for wholehearted commendation, and surely we can pay some sort of tribute to the near-unthinkable miracle of their creation without detracting in any way from what should be rendered unto the Creator.

There are six cantatas here, three apiece for the 12th and 13th Sundays after Trinity, all composed in the 1720's and amounting to a little less than two hours of playing time. The format will be entirely familiar to followers of the series. The presentation is made to resemble a book in a hard cover, an attractive and original idea but as usual I advise a little caution in handling the two discs as it is slightly tricky not to touch the surfaces. There are two essays, one by one of the performers, in this case the double-bass player, and a long and elaborate contribution from Gardiner. He has even more to say than usual this time, and of course the trouble with having something to say is that it gives a reviewer more to comment on. The first thing to be recorded therefore is that to be offered this essay is a privilege for us. It is erudite, illuminating, thoughtful, affectionate, reverent and candid. You may find it slightly heavy going at a first reading, but this is not a production for just one reading. I read it for the basic background before I listened, and I reread it after three or four playings to appreciate better the thinking that had gone into the interpretations. There is any amount of detail, and I preferred to learn rather than find points to dispute.
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Format: Audio CD
The French expression is "rien à dire" (nothing to say, with the connotation that all superlatives are exhausted). This is one great series. The highlight of this one is BWV137, "Lobe den Herren, den mächtigen König der Ehren", which churchgoers would recognise as the hymn "Praise to the Lord, the Almighty, the King of Creation". My one quibble is that Gardiner takes the magnificent opening choral fantasia, with its trumpets and drums, a shade faster than I would like, which takes away some of the magnificence of one of the greatest hymn tunes ever written. However, the Monteverdis handle it with aplomb.

The other cantatas are less well known (to me anyway), and they receive great performances. Recommended for all Bach lovers.
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Format: Audio CD
For me, Gardiner has given us undoubtedly the best Bach cantata cycle ever: historically informed, beautifully sung and played, and deeply spiritual. Musicianship of an incredibly high order. The only people who will fail to appreciate these performances are those stuck in 1955 listening to Karajan, Klemperer and Furtwangler; for although these esteemed musicians were great at the things they did well, Bach wasn't one of them!
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