BACH: Concerto in D minor for two violins, ,BWV 1043. Violin Concerto No. 1 in A minor, BWV 1041. Violin Concerto No. 2 in E, BWV 1042. Concerto in D minor for oboe, violin, strings and continuo, BWV 1060.
Vesko Eschkenazy, Tjeerd Top, violins; Alexei Ogrintchouk, oboe; Concertgebouw Chamber Orch.
PENTATONE SACD PTC 5186 460 TT: 60:18
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BACH: Concerto No. 6 in F, BWV 1057. Concerto in G minor, BWV 1058. Concerto No. 1 in D, BWV 1052. Concerto No. 4 in A, BWV 1055
Matthew Halls, harpsichord/cond. Sarah Sexton, Daniel Edgar, violins. Emilia Benjamin, viola. Jonathan Manson, cello. Timothy Amherst, double-bass. Rebecca Miles,Ian Wilson, recorders.
LINN SACD CRD 410 TT: 64:24
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CORELLI: Concerti Grossi, Op. 6
Avison Ensemble/Pvio Beznosiuk, violin/director
LINN SACD CKD 411 (2 disks) TT: 65:10 & 64:27
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Admirers of Baroque music will find much of interest in these superb issues, all recorded with warm sound in a resonant acoustic excellent audio with performers in front. The Bach violin concerto disk features the two concertos for solo violin, the double violin concerto, and the D minor concerto for violin, oboe, strings and continuo. All of the players are associated with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra—Vesko Eschlenazy is concertmaster, Top first substitute for that important position, and Ogrintchouk is first oboe. I've heard broadcasts of concertos of Szymanowski, Barber, and Dvorák with Eschkenazy and the RCOA; he is equally at home in Bach (he shows his versatility in a Gershwin SACD for Pentatone). Matthew Halls is harpsichordist and conductor of the ensemble known as Retrospect, a period performance group of the highest quality, which gave its first performance in May 2009. The basic group is expandable and already has several superb recordings to their credit. Here we have four Bach harpsichord concertos brilliantly played by all concerned, and recorded with an intimate sonic picture that has super-clarity as well as warmth. And should you wish to listen to all twelve of Corelli's Op. 6, here's another opportunity (there are almost a dozen other recordings currently available including some by Sir Neville Marriner, Sigiswald Kuijken and Trevor Pinnock), but this outstanding new version by the British period performance group The Avison Ensemble. Linn's superb engineering.captures their sound with warmth and clarity.

R.E.B. (December 2012)

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