Friday, October 21, 2016

Froberger, Johann Jacob. (1616-1667) Complete Music for Harpsichord and Organ. Libro Quarto 1656. CD 4.

New acquisition.
Bought in October 2016.
First listen.
Label: Brilliant.
CD 4 from 16.
Recording dates: October 2015 & March 2016.
Recording venue: Basilica della Santissima Annunziata, Florence & Saletta Acustica "Eric James", Pove del Grappa, Vicenza, Italy.
Recording engineer: Alessandro Simonetto.
Running time: 70:14.
Classical relevance: For Froberger enthusiasts, essential, others might want to sample first.

Works performed:
Terza & Quarta parte.
Partita  1-5.

Performed by:
Simone Stella.

Instruments used:
Domenico Di Lorenzo da Lucca organ, 1521.
Harpsichord: William Horn, after Ioannes Ruckers (1638)

Stella is consistent in his playing of both the harpsichord works as well as the Organ works.
He does not hurry on any of the instruments, and his rather contemplative approach wins many details from the music, unheard when played too fast. The music unfolds naturally without haste in expression or colouring. Furthermore Stella is very precise as too meaning of the music, not literal, but strict as to what Froberger has written. He allows some interpretation, but keeps things sober, and at times rather melancholy. It suits Froberger's music well, and one savours the fruits of this in the playfully expressed melodies. The organ does not allow for splashing and jubilant tones, but mention must be made of the excellent top registers, pure and well tuned. You can hear that right at the start of this CD in the Terza parte-Capriccio in F  (twice) and A minor.
The harpsichord has a somewhat dark hue over it, that is very becoming as to the music. Well played it is too, but do not expect too much jollity in his playing, his approach is serious and rather measured. For those that like this way of playing Froberger's music, this set could well be your cup of tea. It certainly is mine, and I claim the whole pot.
The recording fits the mood of the music. Clear as a bell, with plenty of air around the instruments and barely 3 seconds echo. Perfect.
Recommended.




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