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Cat. No. CHAN 0752(2) Price: £10.5 No. of discs: 2
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CHAN 0752 - Bach: Early Cantatas, Volume 3
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Available From: 01 September 2008
This programme contains three cantatas dating from 1714, the year in which Bach was promoted to the post of Konzertmeister at the ducal court in Weimar. His responsibilities now included the composition of concerted sacred vocal music, including the writing of cantatas at regular intervals for Sundays and feast days of the liturgical year.

Bach performed all three works collected on this pair of discs several times. They are presented here as they would have been heard in Weimar at their 1714 performances. The first two works, Erschallet, ihr Lieder, BWV 172 and Himmelskönig, sei willkommen, BWV 182, have much in common in tone and atmosphere: both are essentially jubilant at the prospect of the heavenly eternity awaiting the good Christian at the end of his life, and the images of the Trinity led Bach to employ three trumpets in BWV 172. In BWV 182 there is, instead of trumpets and drums, an intimate conversation principally between violin and recorder. The jubilant mood of these two cantatas is juxtaposed with that of Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis, BWV 21, which exudes a feeling of despair, only for Bach to bring in trumpets and drums at the end as hope gradually begins to dawn.

The Weimar cantatas of J.S. Bach form an exceptional body of work and it is thrilling to hear them performed in a way that Bach would have recognised, and by artists respected in the early music field.

In the glorious fugal conclusion, the single voices again seem the correct approach: the interweaving of voices and instruments (including an unusually perky oboe) is utterly beguiling. In this version the tenor does the bulk of the solo singing and Dani
International Record Review

The recorded sound fits the fresh immediacy of the performances like a glove
BBC Music Magazine

Whatever the authentic arguments, to hear three of Bach’s finest early cantatas played this way, with every line of counterpoint pristine and audible, is a profoundly moving experience, especially in performances as expert and spiritually uplifting as the
Classic FM Magazine

It is marvellous to hear a group of singers and players so at ease, such masters of the ways of chamber music. Buy it, and if you don’t have the previous volumes, buy them too
Early Music Review


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