Recordings of Bach's violin concertos are not in short supply, but this one, nicely recorded at a small hall in the home city of the Freiburg Baroque Orchestra, is unusually satisfying. It does not exactly break new ground, but it improves on several existing ideas and puts them together into a nifty package. First of all is the program itself. The Freiburgers and their leader/violinists, Petra Müllejans and Gottfried von der Goltz (joined here by Anna-Katharina Schreiber), offer by way of conclusion the Concerto for three violins and orchestra, BWV 1064R, a lost work reconstructed from a later version for harpsichord. This isn't terribly often recorded, and it makes a rousing finale to the lively readings that have come before. The soloists have a distinctive ensemble feel, seeming by way of numerous small details of phrasing to react to one another and to the orchestra with uncommon individuality. The orchestra itself plays period instruments, and it has a nice combination of gutsiness (so to speak) and sheen. Harmonia Mundi's engineering at Freiburg's Paulussaal captures all this in faithful detail, adding one more item to a long list of reasons to choose this release.
AllMusic Review by James Manheim
|Concerto for 2 violins in D minor, BWV 1043|
|Violin Concerto in E major, BWV 1042|
|Violin Concerto in A minor, BWV 1041|
|Concerto for 3 violins in D major, BWV 1064R|