Johann Sebastian Bach, Bach Collegium Japan, Masaaki Suzuki - Cantatas 27

Published Wednesday 15th June 2005
Johann Sebastian Bach, Bach Collegium Japan, Masaaki Suzuki - Cantatas 27
Johann Sebastian Bach, Bach Collegium Japan, Masaaki Suzuki - Cantatas 27

STYLE: Choral
RATING 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
OUR PRODUCT CODE: 13069-
LABEL: BIS BISCD1421
FORMAT: CD Album
ITEMS: 1

Reviewed by Steven Whitehead

To have reached volume 27 in any series leads us to suspect either a generous sponsor or an outstanding product. In very small print we see that The Bach Collegium Japan are indeed supported by NEC but it must also be said that this is truly an excellent series. Thankfully for our budgets one can dip in at any point and this disc stands on its own merits as well as being part of a growing library. The three cantatas are all from 1724 and are "A Mighty Fortress Is Our God" (BWV 80), "Where Shall I Find Refuge" (BWV 5) and "Make Yourself Ready, My Spirit" (BWV 115). All were written in German and are sung in the same language but translations are supplied. The choir and orchestra are Japanese and the vocal soloists European. Masaaki Suzuki, the director, aims at an authentic sound so period instruments are used. To this listener it sounds superb. The opening of "A Mighty Fortress" sounds almost chaotic, with vocal lines coming in from all directions but gradually the famous hymn tune is revealed, like seeing a castle through the early morning mist, and we are on the rock solid ground of the eternal kingdom.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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