Bach, J S: Mass in B minor, BWV232


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Bach, J S: Mass in B minor, BWV232


Presto Disc of the Week

29th October 2007

Gramophone Awards 2008

Finalist - Baroque Vocal



Catalogue No:




Release date:

29th Oct 2007




1 hour 48 minutes


SACD (download also available)


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Bach, J S: Mass in B minor, BWV232

Carolyn Sampson (soprano I), Rachel Nicholls (soprano II), Robin Blaze (alto), Gerd Türk (tenor) & Peter Kooij (bass)

Bach Collegium Japan, Masaaki Suzuki

SACD - 2 discs


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Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor, BWV 232

Kyrie: Kyrie eleison (Chorus)

Kyrie: Christe eleison (Soprano I and II)

Kyrie: Kyrie eleison (Chorus)

Gloria: Gloria in excelsis Deo (Chorus)

Gloria: Et in terra pax (Chorus)

Gloria: Laudamus te (Soprano II)

Gloria: Gratias agimus tibi (Chorus)

Gloria: Domine Deus, Rex coelestis (Soprano I and Tenor)

Gloria: Qui tollis peccata mundi (Chorus)

Gloria: Qui sedes ad dextram Patris (Alto)

Gloria: Quoniam tu solus sanctus (Bass)

Gloria: Cum Sancto Spiritu (Chorus)

Credo: Credo in unum Deum (Chorus)

Credo: Patrem omnipotentem (Chorus)

Credo: Et in unum Dominum Jesum Christum (Soprano I and Alto)

Credo: Et incarnatus est (Chorus)

Credo: Crucifixus etiam pro nobis (Chorus)

Credo: Et resurrexit tertia die (Chorus)

Credo: Et in Spiritum Sanctum (Bass)

Credo: Confiteor unum baptisma (Chorus a cappella)

Credo: Et exspecto resurrectionem mortuorum (Chorus)

Sanctus: Sanctus Dominus Deus Sabaoth (Chorus)

Osanna: Osanna in excelsis (Chorus)

Benedictus: Benedictus qui venit (Tenor)

Benedictus: Osanna in excelsis (Chorus)

Agnus Dei: Agnus Dei (Alto)

Agnus Dei: Dona nobis pacem (Chorus)

Gramophone Magazine

February 2008

“…this is a rounded and impressive reading whose "Dona nobis pacem" encapsulates the best of Suzki: committed, life-affirming and generous.”

BBC Music Magazine

January 2008


“The choir is small enough, two/three to a part, to project great clarity and detail - 'Osanna' is delightfully exuberant - though elsewhere Suzuki's tempos are rather deliberate…”

Gramophone Classical Music Guide


“This is, as you would expect from Masaaki Suzuki, a B minor performance of extraordinary devotional weight, as its resonant surround sound irradiates the score in a patiently constructed explication. The reflective objectivity may seem a little too tantalising as the strangely uncharacterised 'Christe eleison' duet is dogged by the kind of over-regulated articulations in the strings from which Bach Collegium Japan can still suffer.
Yet, after the somewhat lugubrious Kyrie, the Gloria fairly crackles and Suzuki's careful voicing between singers and instrumentalists generates extraordinary revelations (such as the consoling beauty of the 'Qui tollis' and, later, a remarkable reading of the Sanctus). The choral movements are admirably unhurried but purposeful.
The solo movements are more variable: intonation takes time to settle early on, especially in the 'Laudamus te', and the 'Quoniam' is shorn of its eloquent grandeur in a prosaic romp, but 'Et in unum Dominum' reveals its expectant delights, as does Blaze's heart-stopping Agnus Dei.
Comparing this to Frieder Bernius's vital account with his Stuttgart forces (see below), the over-riding feeling with Suzuki is that generic beauty of sound, 'good judgement' and expert production (though the stereo picture is preferable to the undefined Super Audio) are collectively not quite enough. Preference remains with Bernius whose reverence for Bach's consummate compendium brings greater inner from the expert soloists here – just a touch more quality. Still, this is a rounded and impressive reading whose 'Dona nobis pacem' encapsulates the best of Suzuki: committed, life-affirming and generous.”

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