Top positive review
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Excellent, lively, highly musical Bach
on 21 September 2014
If you know Rachel Podger's recordings of the solo Sonatas and Partitas, chosen on BBC3's CD Review as first choice some time ago, you will expect good things from these parallel recordings of the sonatas with keyboard (and, in the case of two, BWV1023 and BWV 1021, viola da gamba, well played by Jonathan Manson). You won't be disappointed.There are exactly the same virtues of beautiful sound, highly musical phrasing, technical security, dead-centre tuning and a sense of lively involvement throughout. Trevor Pinnock handles the harpsichord part just as expertly and eloquently and the balance of the recording is first-rate. The set includes both versions of BWV1019 (in G), which means we also hear the lovely (and lengthy) Cantabile. It's an 'authentic-instrument' approach, and if you don't warm to that, there is Grumiaux, wonderfully well played as always but not so well balanced. But really I'd go for Podger and Pinnock if I could have only one version ; it is very satisfying.