Bach: Cantatas Vol 16 / Gardiner
Label: SOLI DEO GLORIA
"This album was recorded at the 59th and final concert in John Eliot Gardiner's triumphant year-long adventure, in a packed - and hushed - St Bartholomew's New York. It opens with Bach's great double-choir motet, Singet dem Herrn BWV 225. BWV 152 Tritt auf die Glaubensbahn follows. Bach shapes this intimate chamber piece, scored only for soprano, bass and six instruments, as a spiritual and musical journey. BWV 122 Das neugeborne Kindelein, a chorale cantata composed in 1724 as part of Bach's second mini-Christmas cycle for Leipzig, is as close to the traditional Christmas carol-like image of the infant Jesus as Bach ever got. BWV 190 Singet dem Herrn ein neues Lied! was composed for New Year's Day 1724, of which the first two movements have had to be partially reconstructed since only the voice lines and two violin parts survived. Between the psalm verses Bach inserts two lines from Luther's vernacular version of the Te Deum (1529). These he assigns to the traditional liturgical plain-chant delivered in long notes by the choir in octaves, a technique of musical relief of which he was a master - and which is hugely imposing in performance. A year later, as part of his third Leipzig cycle, Bach presented the BWV 28 Gottlob! nun geht das Jahr zu Ende, a fitting title to sum up the parallel sense of loss and fulfilment, relief and regret within the Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists at the very end of a year-long, life-changing experience. ""Gardiner's 2000 Bach Pilgrimage volumes are very addictive. No studio renderings can match them for immediacy, and their revelations are many...the general eloquence is overwhelming...You feel you were there, and it's thrilling."" (The Times) ""Once again, Gardiner's Monteverdi Choir is the jewel in the crown of each cantata performance. Add to that Gardiner's dramatic, electric response to music he clearly loves and you have a set that rivals his Gramophone Record of the Year Award-winning disc that launched this amazing series."" (Gramophone)"