Ich hatte viel Bekümmernis is a magnificent account of Bach’s concertos and sinfonias for oboe with Holliger once again proving himself unrivalled as a player of the instrument.
Holliger’s albums of classical core repertoire have become infrequent, and this is his first such for ECM since his 1997 Zelenka recording.
The oboist’s superb performance also attests to his long artistic relationship with the Camerata Bern. Soloist and ensemble are in perfect accord and impeccable ECM sound renders every detail in the music crystal clear. Holliger also contributes liner notes in which he speaks of his abiding love of Bach’s work.
Sinfonia - zur Kantate "Ich hatte viel Bekummernis" BMV 21 fur Solo-Oboe, Solo-Violine Streicher und Basso continuo
“He plays idiomatically...with stylish decorations. Yet surprisingly he combines his modern oboe with Baroque period strings...Camerata Bern supports buoyantly and though with momentary minor tuning lapses...A fine testimony to an oustandingly versatile musician - most enjoyable.”
“Holliger may be now in his seventies but age hasn't taken the edge off his technique. The unruffled legato with which he unfolds Bach's florid lines makes this performance equivalent of a super-smooth bourbon.”
Awards Issue 2011
“a recital of rare questing elegance...The deft, yielding rubatos in the slow movements afford an irresistable warmth which provide a compelling foil to the visceral originality of the playing...this is music-making which can only ravish in its undimmed personality and artistic ambition.”
3rd July 2011
“This gloriously enjoyable recording, released with an ECM disc of recent Holliger vocal and chamber works, offers “reclamations” for oboe and string orchestra of Bach works familiar in other guises, yet originally cast for the instrument. The C minor work well known as a double harpsichord concerto is really, Holliger and modern scholarship contend, one for oboe and violin (Erich Höbarth), and sounds marvellous in that form here.”
23rd June 2011
“his tone may not be quite as fulsome as once it was, but the elegance and intelligence of his playing remain peerless, and the qualities that made him the greatest oboist of the 20th century are obvious as ever.”
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