STYLE: Classical RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 174966-28150 LABEL: Warner Classics 0190295794781 FORMAT: CD Album
Reviewed by Tony Cummings
After reading Andrew Gant's excellent Johann Sebastian Bach: A Very Brief History book I was driven to go out and buy this greatest hits compilation. I'm so glad I did. Warner Music Group did a wonderful job in 2017 of pulling together the great man's best known works and releasing them here for little more than a fiver. With 18 tracks and a playing time of a whopping 75 minutes 16 seconds this is a magnificent introduction to some of the greatest music ever written. If, like me, you find some of Bach's fugues simply too complex to be appreciated there are more accessible gems like the marvellously elegant "Brandenburg Concerto No 3" (performed here by Academy Of St Martin In The Fields), the haunting "Air" (played here by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, demonstrating that Procol Harum's addition of a rock voice and surreal lyrics didn't add anything to the air's haunting beauty) and my favourite Bach hymn "Jesu, Joy Of Man's Desiring" (sung on this compilation by the Choir Of King's College, Cambridge). All have got me reaching for the repeat button. And thanks to this set I'm now getting into "Concerto For Two Violins" played with absolutely breathtaking skill by Anne-Sophie Mutter and Salvatore Accardo with the English Chamber Orchestra. Even if you're a complete newcomer to classical music, you need to investigate 'Best Of Bach'. And after experiencing this hugely enjoyable compilation I'm now planning to buy the 'Best Of Handel' in Warner Bros' commendable 'Essential Classics' series.
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