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Bach: Harpsichord Concertos [Hybrid SACD - DSD]

J.S. Bach , Matthew Halls , Retrospect Ensemble Audio CD
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Price: $17.06 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 12 Songs, 2013 $8.99  
Audio CD, Hybrid SACD - DSD, 2012 $17.06  

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Bach: Harpsichord Concertos + J.S. Bach: Goldberg Variations
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Product Details

  • Orchestra: Retrospect Ensemble
  • Conductor: Matthew Halls
  • Composer: J.S. Bach
  • Audio CD (October 30, 2012)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Hybrid SACD - DSD
  • Label: Linn
  • ASIN: B0072HTWGW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #268,399 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews


Disc of the Month - BBC Music Magazine Disc of the Week - BBC Radio 3 CD Review 'One of the Best Classical Albums of 2012' 'Recording of the Month' Music Web International '...a must-have music disc for all music lovers.' International Record Review '... vibrant energy' BBC Music Magazine 'This is a joyful and invigorating release.' Gramophone 'The concertos sound pristine and revealed anew, like cleaned Old Master paintings.' The Sunday Times '...stylish but also sensitively recorded' The Irish Times 'Perfect Execution' Pizzicato 'The clarity and presence are especially remarkable' HiFi News '...sheer ear-popping brilliance...' BBC Online '...anything that Matthew Halls and the Retrospect Ensemble touch seems to turn to gold.' Music Web International '...vigor and fresh approaches' Audiophile Audition 'Interesting releases in October 2012' Codaex 'Several superb recordings to their credit', 2012

Product Description

Having wowed the critics with its 2011 recording of 'J.S. Bach: Easter and Ascension Oratorios' Retrospect Ensemble returns with Bach's Harpsichord Concertos. Director Matthew Halls takes on the role of soloist, having proved both his keyboard virtuosity and affinity with Bach's harpsichord music in his debut solo recording, 'J.S. Bach: Goldberg Variations', which International Record Review named 'Outstanding'. Founded by Matthew Halls, Retrospect Ensemble takes its musicians and audiences on an exciting journey, exploring the repertoire of four centuries and embracing the practices, styles and aesthetics of former ages with renewed vigor and a fresh approach. In 2010 the 36-year-old was announced as The Oregon Bach Festival's next artistic director, due to his 'international reputation in the worlds of choral and early music [and] consummate skill as a Bach interpreter.' He shall assume the role in 2013.

Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Gigantic Harpsichord December 17, 2012
By Arnaldo
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I can't really decide whether to call this a flawless performance in a flawed recording or a flawed recording of a flawless performance. My dilemma results from shifting priorities, in that sometimes the Retrospect Ensemble's inspired rendition of Bach's harpsichord concertos takes precedence over all else. But then it's back to reality, with a recording that emphasizes the harpsichord so heavily that it undermines the concept of a concerto for soloist and orchestra. Actually, it sounds sometimes more like a solo recital by a gigantic harpsichord - think of it as sitting right in front of a Steinway concert grand with the lid open - with some other occasional instruments popping up here and there.

Getting back to the performance though, borrowing freely from my raving review of the Retrospect's Bach Easter & Ascension Oratorios, what we have here is the work of a superb group, led by the brisk tempos of conductor and soloist Matthew Halls, but perfectly executed by the members of the Retrospect, which interestingly enough, changes its configuration depending on the project. And whether as a full orchestra with choir or as the smallish ensemble presented here, their articulation and precision is impeccable. I'll add to that by saying that in spite of all its HIPness, the lean string section never sounds scratchy, the fast tempos flow ever so naturally, and the soloist somehow manages to make his harpsichord as expressive as a piano.

But no matter what, the engineering kept intruding into the performance. The funny thing is that like most Linn recordings, this one is incredibly transparent.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great recording December 27, 2012
By LLwyd
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
I have played all of these with the same configuration, and have always thought that one instrument on a part was what was intended.. This recording feelings about this. It's a wonderful recording.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun songs March 21, 2013
Format:MP3 Music|Verified Purchase
This set of songs combined J. S. Bach Harpsichord sound with modern synthesizers for some unique versions of these Concertos. I really enjoyed the spin on these classics!!
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