- Orchestral Suite No. 4 in D major, BWV 1069
- Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D major, BWV 1068
- Orchestral Suite No. 2 in B minor, BWV 1067
- Orchestral Suite No. 1 in C major, BWV 1066
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Britain's Academy of Ancient Music, still going strong even in the face of now-commonplace competition in the historical-performance field, first recorded Bach's six orchestral suites in 1988. They return to them in 2014 with a recording characteristic of the group's history but still reflective of the efforts of new director Richard Egarr, who also plays a vigorous harpsichord continuo. Egarr explicitly rejects the blistering tempos of the contemporary Italian Bach style, and in the suites this is reasonable: the dances come out with the intended rough charm, and the slow movements, including the so-called Air on a G string from the "Suite No. 3 in D major, BWV 1068" (CD 2, track 2), have an attractive natural feel. The main factor determining the reaction of many listeners will be the Academy's one-instrument-per-part forces. Egarr's brasses are smooth, but there are still places where chords of them emerge baldly from the texture. Of course many groups have played the suites this way, but Bach probably had a larger group in Cöthen and might have known Italian or French orchestras with several dozen players. Recommended for one-instrument-per-part fans.
|Label:||Aam Records (Nax615)|