Better-known to history as a brilliant performer than as a composer, Michel Blavet is gradually receiving recognition for his sonatas for flute and basso continuo. This French Baroque master of the transverse flute promoted the instrument through his virtuoso playing, but his works appear to have been written mostly for pedagogical needs. This is not to suggest that these pieces lack charm or invention, for they are clever explorations of innovative flute techniques and give players ample room for expressive playing. However, it is fair to point out that Blavet's melodies and forms are largely derived from the period's popular music and the sonata da camera practices of Arcangelo Corelli, so the music itself is not especially unusual or novel. L'Insinuante presents five of Blavet's sonatas, interspersed with four short pieces for two flutes. Frank Theuns is the featured soloist in the sonatas, and his rich tone and dexterity make the sonatas enjoyable and pleasantly surprising, for he achieves some remarkable timbral effects. Flutist Marc Hantaï joins Theuns in the duets, and a solid continuo is provided throughout by Martin Bauer on viola da gamba, Ewald Demeyere on harpsichord, and Wim Maeseele on theorbo. Accent's recording is clear and set at an appropriate level for this ensemble's intimate sound.
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AllMusic Review by Blair Sanderson
|Sonata for flute & continuo in D minor, "La Vibray", Op. 2/2|
|Sonata for flute & continuo in G minor, "La Lumaque", Op. 2/4|
|Sonata for flute & continuo in E minor, Op. 3/3|
|Sonata for flute & continuo in B minor, Op. 3/2|
|Sonata for flute & continuo in E minor, "La Dhérouville" Op. 2/3|