Thursday, February 9, 2017

Concerti curiosi.

New acquisition.
Bought in February 2017.
First listen: 9-2-2017.
Label: Signum.
Recording dates: August 2010.
Recording venue: St. Andrew's Church, Toddington, Gloucestershire,England.
Recording engineer: Adrian Hunter,
Running time: 62:23.
Classical relevance: Will worth acquiring.

Composers and works on this CD:

Pietro Domenico Paradies.(1707-1791) Concerto for harpsichord organ & strings.
Anton Reichenauer. (1694-1730) Concerto à 5 for Oboe.
Johan Daniel Berlin. (1714-1787) Sinfonia à 5 for Cornet.
Johann Christoph Pepusch. (1667-1752) Concerto for Four violins.
Johann Wilhelm Hertel. (1727-1789) Concerto No. 3 for Trumpet.
William Croft. ( 1678-1727) Sonata for four violins and BC.
Pietro Baldassari. (c.1683-after 1768) Sonata for Cornett and strings.

Performed by:
Charivari Agréable, Kah-Ming Ng. (authentic period instruments)

A first encounter with this well praised ensemble. They seem to be very famous including their conductor. Despite this I never heard of them or their leader in crime. This disc attracted me because of some unknown composers and works I never heard before. Well to be honest I never heard any of the works. So a novice to the compositions I was surprised by some fine music, not the best that was on offer at the time, but nevertheless worthwhile to record. Pepusch striked me as one of the better composers in the line up. His concerto for four violins is well written and of immediate interest. Berlin's concerto for Cornett was nice, but this instrument was rather loudly recorded, as was the trumpet in the concerto by Hertel. There is  some uneven trumpet playing in the first movement . It's a natural trumpet and they are hard to play anytime. The engineer clearly made a judgement error in placing the soloists to much forward. They tend to dominate the concertos. Baldassari's concerto is better balanced, but pleasant is different. I loved Croft his sonata, it has its quality and is well played.
As to the level of this ensemble I think it's adequate, but their quality as praised in the booklet is overdone, as least in the context of this CD. The acoustic did not help, being rather hard on the ears, and the recording balance was neither ideal. So a mixed blessing really. 




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