I love music.

I write about the music I like and have purchased for the benefit of better understanding it and sharing my preferences with others.

Bach: *Kammermusik*

Musica Antiqua, Köln record Bach's Chamber Works. This music has been released and re-released a number of times. I first heard it on LP releases belonging to the Sibley Music Library (Rochester, NY), and found it coupled with other Bach/MAK recordings several years ago. Bach Chamber Music Yes, it was so good back in my college days, that a CD of it was warranted. This collection includes the sonatas for violin and harpsichord (good, but the recording from 1981 suffers a bit), the flute sonatas and partita, the gamba sonatas, and some extra bits, such as the Fuga BWV 1026, the Sonata BWV 1020 (here in the violin version), and the Sonata BWV Anh. 153. That's right--some lesser known Bach works. Treats for the ears and the soul. What we're treated to, of course, is that quite unique, piquant Goebel violin sound. In general I found the violin performances exemplary, the da gamba works less satisfying (tempi too slow in some cases), the flute works, suffering from sound quality. In fact, the recordings as a whole suffer from inconsistent sound quality, having been recorded at different times, and originally issued as different releases. None of the performances are bad; its simply that newer releases have eclipsed some in their sound quality, or level of dynamic performance. My favorite track of the set is the aforementioned BWV 1026, a "fugue" for violin and harpsichord. It has dubious origins, but I so badly believe it to be Bachian due to its stupendous quality. The piece is at once modern, ancient, and fresh. It's foot tapping, glorious in that sound, and when those multiple stops come in, it brings the widest, happiest grin across your face. In a few places, Goebel sound a little stressed (tuning, scratchy) but it doesn't get much more authentic than this... it has a palpable rawness to it that is so downright honest, that you know those performers feel the magic under their fingers, in their hearts, and minds. It's this passion the music speaks that can be found in smaller pockets throughout this collection of diverse Kammermusik. This is vintage, "old school" MAK. Hazelzet and ter Linden take a back seat, but some of those flute movements are played with the challenge meter turned on high. Because of the extreme stereo separation of some tracks, I'd recommend this in an open listening room with loudspeakers, in lieu of using headphones.

A Delicious Bite

Dowland: Lachrimae