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  • Bach: Gamba Sonatas - Sonata 1 in G Major BWV 1027; Capriccion in B-flat Major BWV 992; Sonata 2 in D Major BWV 1028; Sonata 3 in G minor BWV 1029
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Bach: Gamba Sonatas - Sonata 1 in G Major BWV 1027; Capriccion in B-flat Major BWV 992; Sonata 2 in D Major BWV 1028; Sonata 3 in G minor BWV 1029 Import


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Audio CD, Import, October 10, 2000
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Editorial Reviews

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Bach's sonatas for viola da gamba and continuo seem to be quite popular among performers--surprisingly so, considering that they're not original compositions, but adaptations by Bach of trio sonatas he wrote for other instruments. Perhaps that's why they've been performed and recorded more often over the years by cellists (on both Baroque and modern instruments) and even violists than by gamba players. During Bach Year 2000, however, these works have gotten a great deal of attention: the present recording is the fifth to appear since late 1999. Why take any notice of this one? It's just plain gamba and harpsichord: no marquee names like Jordi Savall and Ton Koopman, no unusual instruments like the lautenwerck (keyboard-lute) or early fortepiano featured on other recordings. Why did Harmonia Mundi add this release to the pile instead of saving it for a couple of years?

Because it's very, very good. The viola da gamba is a reticent instrument, and Jaap ter Linden doesn't make the lustrous sound Savall does, but he transmits a sense of the melodic line's ebbs and flows even better than his famous colleague. Richard Egarr (and Harmonia Mundi's recording engineers) give a crystalline sparkle to the harpsichord's sound. The tempos are just slightly slower than on the other recent recordings of these works, but the pace never seems to drag. The other recordings mentioned above each have something to recommend them, but this release is at least their equal. --Matthew Westphal


1. Son I in G, BWV 1027: I. Adagio
2. Son I in G, BWV 1027: II. Allegro Ma Non Tanto
3. Son I in G, BWV 1027: III. Andante
4. Son I in G, BWV 1027: IV. Allegro Moderato
5. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: I. Arioso. Adagio
6. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: II.
7. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: III. Adagiosissimo
8. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: IV. - Jaap Ter Linden/Richard Egarr J
9. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: V. Allegro Poco. Aria De Il Postiglione
10. Capriccio in B flat, BWV 992: VI. Fuga Al Imitatione Di Posta
11. Son II in D, BWV 1028: I. Adagio
12. Son II in D, BWV 1028: II. Allegro
13. Son II in D, BWV 1028: III. Andante
14. Son II in D, BWV 1028: IV. Allegro
15. Capriccio in E, BWV 993
16. Son III in g, BWV 1029: I. Vivace
17. Son III in g, BWV 1029: II. Adagio
18. Son III in g, BWV 1029: III. Allegro

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