Subcategories

Monteverdi Choir, John Eliot Gardiner - Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs

Posted By: Designol
Monteverdi Choir, John Eliot Gardiner - Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs

Johann Sebastian Bach - Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs
Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, conducted by John Eliot Gardiner

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 533 Mb (incl 5%) | Scans included | Time: 01:45:44
Genre: Classical | Label: Soli Deo Gloria | # SDG722

The Monteverdi Choir and English Baroque Soloists are renowned of their spectacular performances of Bach’s epic masterpiece, which they have toured extensively. During their last tour (in Munich, Frankfurt, Lucerne, Aix-en-Provence and Paris) there was a stampede for tickets and they performed every night in full houses, to spellbound audiences. This album is the culmination of the tour: it was recorded in an open session in London, and captures the special atmosphere of the concerts. It is presented in a 2-CD casebook and contains a booklet featuring original notes by John Eliot Gardiner translated in English, German and French.

With this recording, conductor John Eliot Gardiner returns to Bach's magisterial Mass in B minor, BWV 232, just about exactly 30 years after first recording it in 1985. In between have come a host of other Bach recordings; Gardiner's impressive Bach cantata tour with his Monteverdi Choir, performing Bach's music in places of historical importance to it; and his book Bach: Music in the Castle of Heaven, drawing in large part on insights developed during the recording of the cantata cycle. With all this in mind, it is a testimony to the consistency of Gardiner's vision that nothing has been fundamentally recast here. Instead, the music-making is sharpened, the interpretations deepened, with singers who have learned to interact with each other in very subtle ways. Gardiner here uses a choir of 35 and an even larger orchestra with dual harpsichord and organ continuo: large even by general standards and representing a total rejection of the fashionable one-voice-per-part approach. The only objection to this performance might come if you're convinced by that approach and are uncomfortable with Gardiner's rather lush sound. Otherwise, this recording is gorgeous, intelligent, and above all deeply felt. Sample the choral numbers in the "Gloria," such as the "Gratias agimus tibi" (CD one, track six), where the physical sense of rejoicing as Gardiner has the chorus jump in from the previous solo is palpable. Everywhere there are the Gardiner trademarks of close attention to detail, including faultless text intelligibility, combined with a sense of the monumental shape of the whole (which is really the point of the B minor Mass: yes, it was derived in part from earlier pieces, but the genius lay in seeing how they fit together). The engineering staff from Gardiner's Soli Deo Gloria label, working in St. Luke's, London, has also learned a great deal about the way these musicians work together. A magnificent Mass in B minor.

Review by James Manheim, Allmusic.com

Reviewed as 24/96 download from eclassical.com (also available in mp3 and 16-bit, all with pdf booklet, and from dealers on 2-CD set).

Hard on the heels of the splendid Linn recording of Bach’s Magnificat with the Christmas interpolations and Cantata No.63 from John Butt and the Dunedin Consort (CKD469 - Recording of the Month) comes this equally winning recording of the great b-minor Mass. I’m trying to decide on my six Recordings of the Year and seriously thinking that there will have to be two Bach entries.

This could easily have been the shortest review that I have ever written: this is as perfect as it gets this side of what Sir John Eliot Gardiner calls Music in the Castle of Heaven, the title of his 2013 book on the music of Bach, excerpts from which are included in the booklet with the new recording. If you have hesitated to go for one of the existing recordings of this wonderful work, fear not to launch away.

If, however, you already own JEG’s own superb earlier DG Archiv recording (4155142 or more economically on 4779984) or the award-winning version from John Butt and his Dunedin Consort on Linn (CKD354), recommendation becomes more complicated unless you have an illimitably expandable purse and the physical room or a huge external hard-drive to store several recordings of the b-minor on CD or download. I’ve just had to upgrade my external HD capacity to a 5TB model. It’s almost unthinkable when I recall that internal hard drives had a maximum capacity of 520MB just 20 years ago that the 24-bit download of the new b-minor takes up 1.86GB.

I wrote about the available recordings of the b-minor Mass in an appendix to my review of Volume 2 of The Sixteen’s short Lutheran Masses: I listed there the earlier Gardiner and the Butt together with Harnoncourt (Teldec), Suzuki (BIS), Herreweghe (PHI) and Parrott (Virgin/Erato, a super-budget twofer) and I could be happy with any of these on my putative Desert Island, as I could with a more recent release from Arcangelo and Jonathan Cohen on Hyperion (CDA68051/2 – Recording of the Month and DL News 2014/14). You’ll find some other recordings listed in MWI Recommends.

The oldest of these, from Harnoncourt, is no longer available on the super-budget complete Bach USB edition but comes on a budget-price 2-CD set, Warner Teldec 2564698538: like the Parrott it sells for under £10 and either would be ideal for those with limited buying power, though I’d give my preference to the latter, with Emma Kirkby among the soloists. The 2-CD set is the least expensive way to obtain the Parrott, with some download providers asking over £28.

30 years on from his first b-minor recording, Gardiner’s solo team has changed along with the membership of the Monteverdi Choir – one veteran from 1985 left – and English Baroque Soloists. I’m not even going to try to compare the two, however: that would be like trying to decide which version of Shakespeare’s King Lear is the greater masterpiece when the editors of the modern Oxford text have wisely decided to print both and not try to conflate them as older editions did. Both teams are first class and I shall be listening to both versions in future: indeed, I understand that Gardiner himself doesn’t consider the older set to have been superseded.

There is, however, one very significant point of difference between both Gardiner recordings and those of Parrott and Butt: he doesn’t subscribe any more now than he did before to the one-to-a-part theory of performance for Bach’s cantatas and masses which he describes as unproven and like listening to ‘the b-minor Madrigal’. John Butt is equally definite that Rifkin and others have proved the case for one to a part performance. It’s not just that my educational background has taught me to be tolerant of very different interpretations of literature and music; I can and do really enjoy hearing Bach’s music from both schools of thought. One point of contact, however, between the two schools of thought: Gardiner now draws his soloists from the chorus and the result is none the worse for that.

Perhaps the earliest section, labelled Missa in the libretto, the Lutheran Mass containing Kyrie and Gloria and essentially completed in 1733, lends itself best to the single-voice theory for occasions when it might have been envisioned as sung by Bach’s very best voices at Leipzig although, at almost an hour, it's twice as long as his other Lutheran Masses. Whatever his intention for the rest of the work, whether for performance in Dresden or simply as something to bequeath to the future, there’s no doubt that the new SDG recordings is very convincing. Gardiner points to sections of the Credo as containing the best music and of these I would point to Et resurrexit (CD2, track 5) as vindicating his approach.

But then I listen again to Parrott (CD2, track 6) and Butt (CD2, track 6) and I find the music sounding different but equally wonderful and I become more than ever convinced that, like Bach’s other great late masterpiece, The Art of Fugue, the music lends itself to a wide variety of treatments.

The new SDG recording sells for around £20 on CD – £17.75 on offer from Presto as I write – and $18.91/$28.31 (mp3 and 16-bit/24-bit) as a download. You should find the Linn 2-SACD set for around £14.50 – £11.60 on offer from Presto as I write – which makes the equivalent 24-bit download from Hyperion or Linn rather expensive at £18, though the 16-bit is more economical at £10, with mp3 for £8.

Bargain hunters should find the DG Duo release of the older DG Archiv for around £11.50, with the Parrott and Harnoncourt costing less still.

I can’t give you a best buy. In their different ways all the recordings which I have mentioned have a great deal to offer without representing the sole answer to this great work. Perhaps they are all like the blind men examining the elephant – one describing the trunk, another the tusks, a third the legs and yet another the tail. Each tells the truth without giving a definitive answer. I can say, however, that if you were to force me to make just one choice the new SDG recording would be a very strong contender – perhaps the strongest of all.

Review by Brian Wilson, MusicWeb-International.com

Monteverdi Choir, John Eliot Gardiner - Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs



Monteverdi Choir, John Eliot Gardiner - Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs



Hannah Morrison - soprano
Esther Brazil - mezzo-soprano
Meg Bragle - alto
Kate Symonds-Joy - alto
Peter Davoren - tenor
Nick Pritchard - tenor
Alex Ashworth - bass
David Shipley - bass

Monteverdi Choir
English Baroque Soloists
John Eliot Gardiner

Tracklist:

CD1:

01. Coro: Kyrie eleison (09:30)
02. Duetto: Christe eleison (04:48)
03. Coro: Kyrie eleison (03:19)
04. Coro: Gloria in excelsis Deo (06:00)
05. Aria: Laudamus te (03:59)
06. Coro: Gratias agimus tibi (03:00)
07. Duetto: Domine Deus (05:11)
08. Coro: Qui tollis peccata mundi (03:05)
09. Aria: Qui sedes ad dextram Patris (04:06)
10. Aria: Quoniam tu solus sanctus (04:34)
11. Coro: Cum Sancto Spiritu (03:33)

CD2:

01. Coro: Credo in unum Deum - Patrem omnipotentem (03:24)
02. Duetto: Et in unum Dominum (04:10)
03. Coro: Et incarnatus est (03:28)
04. Coro: Crucifixus (03:00)
05. Coro: Et resurrexit (03:57)
06. Aria: Et in Spiritum Sanctum (05:25)
07. Coro: Confiteor (02:32)
08. Coro: Et expecto (03:50)
09. Coro: Sanctus (05:10)
10. Coro: Osanna in excelsis (02:26)
11. Aria: Benedictus (05:40)
12. Coro: Osanna in excelsis (02:25)
13. Aria: Agnus Dei (05:25)
14. Coro: Dona nobis pacem (03:36)


Exact Audio Copy V1.1 from 23. June 2015

EAC extraction logfile from 28. May 2016, 21:35

Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD1

Used drive : HL-DT-STDVDRAM GU70N Adapter: 1 ID: 0

Read mode : Secure
Utilize accurate stream : Yes
Defeat audio cache : Yes
Make use of C2 pointers : No

Read offset correction : 48
Overread into Lead-In and Lead-Out : No
Fill up missing offset samples with silence : Yes
Delete leading and trailing silent blocks : No
Null samples used in CRC calculations : Yes
Used interface : Native Win32 interface for Win NT & 2000

Used output format : User Defined Encoder
Selected bitrate : 128 kBit/s
Quality : High
Add ID3 tag : No
Command line compressor : C:\Program Files (x86)\Exact Audio Copy\Flac\flac.exe
Additional command line options : -V -8 -T "Date=%year%" -T "Genre=%genre%" %source%


TOC of the extracted CD

Track | Start | Length | Start sector | End sector
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––-
1 | 0:00.00 | 9:30.07 | 0 | 42756
2 | 9:30.07 | 4:48.57 | 42757 | 64413
3 | 14:18.64 | 3:19.28 | 64414 | 79366
4 | 17:38.17 | 6:00.36 | 79367 | 106402
5 | 23:38.53 | 3:59.05 | 106403 | 124332
6 | 27:37.58 | 3:00.66 | 124333 | 137898
7 | 30:38.49 | 5:11.31 | 137899 | 161254
8 | 35:50.05 | 3:05.73 | 161255 | 175202
9 | 38:56.03 | 4:06.34 | 175203 | 193686
10 | 43:02.37 | 4:34.69 | 193687 | 214305
11 | 47:37.31 | 3:33.09 | 214306 | 230289


Range status and errors

Selected range

Filename C:\temp\Bach - Mass in B minor - Gardiner\CD1\Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD1.wav

Peak level 98.6 %
Extraction speed 4.9 X
Range quality 100.0 %
Test CRC E63E7345
Copy CRC E63E7345
Copy OK

No errors occurred


AccurateRip summary

Track 1 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [F664CEFD] (AR v2)
Track 2 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [BF848511] (AR v2)
Track 3 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [700A68D1] (AR v2)
Track 4 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [B694FE39] (AR v2)
Track 5 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [BDB7E559] (AR v2)
Track 6 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [0B1E2527] (AR v2)
Track 7 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [B8D4C453] (AR v2)
Track 8 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [13687A4A] (AR v2)
Track 9 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [7A3AB568] (AR v2)
Track 10 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [26FB94E4] (AR v2)
Track 11 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [7D5902BA] (AR v2)

All tracks accurately ripped

End of status report

==== Log checksum E7D7DEF6A56FA6D9543FD882532C3E70F92228CB348C6B7A191DC2793F8FEC70 ====

foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2016-06-18 14:49:11

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Statistics for: 09-Aria: Qui sedes ad dextram Patris
Number of samples: 10868592
Duration: 4:06
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Left Right

Peak Value: -11.74 dB –- -9.10 dB
Avg RMS: -27.87 dB –- -25.76 dB
DR channel: 13.43 dB –- 13.02 dB
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Official DR Value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 681 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Statistics for: 05-Aria: Laudamus te
Number of samples: 10542840
Duration: 3:59
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Left Right

Peak Value: -6.52 dB –- -6.26 dB
Avg RMS: -25.66 dB –- -25.82 dB
DR channel: 14.55 dB –- 15.22 dB
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Official DR Value: DR15

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 681 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Hannah Morrison, Kate Symonds-Joy, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD1 (1)
Hannah Morrison, Peter Davoren, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD1 (2)
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR13 -5.39 dB -24.95 dB 4:49 02-Duetto: Christe eleison
DR14 -6.29 dB -26.98 dB 5:11 07-Duetto: Domine Deus
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 2
Official DR value: DR14

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 681 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD1
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR13 -2.10 dB -19.25 dB 9:30 01-Coro: Kyrie eleison
DR12 -3.02 dB -19.63 dB 3:19 03-Coro: Kyrie eleison
DR12 -0.50 dB -16.90 dB 6:00 04-Coro: Gloria in excelsis Deo
DR12 -0.12 dB -16.36 dB 3:01 06-Coro: Gratias agimus tibi
DR11 -5.37 dB -20.41 dB 3:06 08-Coro: Qui tollis peccata mundi
DR11 -0.79 dB -16.12 dB 3:33 11-Coro: Cum Sancto Spiritu
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 6
Official DR value: DR12

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 681 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2016-06-18 14:49:09

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Statistics for: 10-Aria: Quoniam tu solus sanctus
Number of samples: 12123972
Duration: 4:35
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Left Right

Peak Value: -4.72 dB –- -5.93 dB
Avg RMS: -22.30 dB –- -21.13 dB
DR channel: 12.70 dB –- 13.13 dB
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Official DR Value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 681 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================


Exact Audio Copy V1.1 from 23. June 2015

EAC extraction logfile from 28. May 2016, 22:07

Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD2

Used drive : HL-DT-STDVDRAM GU70N Adapter: 1 ID: 0

Read mode : Secure
Utilize accurate stream : Yes
Defeat audio cache : Yes
Make use of C2 pointers : No

Read offset correction : 48
Overread into Lead-In and Lead-Out : No
Fill up missing offset samples with silence : Yes
Delete leading and trailing silent blocks : No
Null samples used in CRC calculations : Yes
Used interface : Native Win32 interface for Win NT & 2000

Used output format : User Defined Encoder
Selected bitrate : 128 kBit/s
Quality : High
Add ID3 tag : No
Command line compressor : C:\Program Files (x86)\Exact Audio Copy\Flac\flac.exe
Additional command line options : -V -8 -T "Date=%year%" -T "Genre=%genre%" %source%


TOC of the extracted CD

Track | Start | Length | Start sector | End sector
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––-
1 | 0:00.00 | 3:24.66 | 0 | 15365
2 | 3:24.66 | 4:10.54 | 15366 | 34169
3 | 7:35.45 | 3:28.11 | 34170 | 49780
4 | 11:03.56 | 3:00.03 | 49781 | 63283
5 | 14:03.59 | 3:57.26 | 63284 | 81084
6 | 18:01.10 | 5:25.04 | 81085 | 105463
7 | 23:26.14 | 2:32.23 | 105464 | 116886
8 | 25:58.37 | 3:50.64 | 116887 | 134200
9 | 29:49.26 | 5:10.22 | 134201 | 157472
10 | 34:59.48 | 2:26.26 | 157473 | 168448
11 | 37:25.74 | 5:40.08 | 168449 | 193956
12 | 43:06.07 | 2:25.13 | 193957 | 204844
13 | 45:31.20 | 5:25.12 | 204845 | 229231
14 | 50:56.32 | 3:36.59 | 229232 | 245490


Range status and errors

Selected range

Filename C:\temp\Bach - Mass in B minor - Gardiner\CD2\Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD2.wav

Peak level 99.9 %
Extraction speed 4.9 X
Range quality 99.9 %
Test CRC 678BAE95
Copy CRC 678BAE95
Copy OK

No errors occurred


AccurateRip summary

Track 1 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [EA966D0F] (AR v2)
Track 2 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [A895442A] (AR v2)
Track 3 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [1B5B84C6] (AR v2)
Track 4 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [8746CCBC] (AR v2)
Track 5 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [7A3101BB] (AR v2)
Track 6 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [01A0F33B] (AR v2)
Track 7 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [0A69C805] (AR v2)
Track 8 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [969C2045] (AR v2)
Track 9 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [C86E4137] (AR v2)
Track 10 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [9799E980] (AR v2)
Track 11 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [344A3952] (AR v2)
Track 12 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [823553C4] (AR v2)
Track 13 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [C4FBEBAB] (AR v2)
Track 14 accurately ripped (confidence 9) [44447687] (AR v2)

All tracks accurately ripped

End of status report

==== Log checksum 454CE9B12000BECA0C3908B020467638AE05D464D5F0FC266749142943CD9CF3 ====

foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2016-06-18 14:49:28

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Hannah Morrison, Meg Bragle, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD2 (1)
Meg Bragle, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD2 (2)
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR13 -5.49 dB -22.95 dB 4:11 02-Duetto: Et in unum Dominum
DR13 -10.92 dB -29.12 dB 5:25 13-Aria: Agnus Dei
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 2
Official DR value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 662 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Monteverdi Choir, English Baroque Soloists, John Eliot Gardiner / Bach - Mass in B Minor - CD2
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR12 -0.42 dB -16.51 dB 3:25 01-Coro: Credo in unum Deum - Patrem omnipotentem
DR12 -3.14 dB -22.14 dB 3:28 03-Coro: Et incarnatus est
DR12 -1.87 dB -19.94 dB 3:00 04-Coro: Crucifixus
DR14 -0.19 dB -18.98 dB 3:57 05-Coro: Et resurrexit
DR12 -1.61 dB -19.70 dB 2:32 07-Coro: Confiteor
DR13 -0.99 dB -19.32 dB 3:51 08-Coro: Et expecto
DR12 -0.19 dB -15.37 dB 5:10 09-Coro: Sanctus
DR13 -0.61 dB -18.00 dB 2:26 10-Coro: Osanna in excelsis
DR13 0.00 dB -17.25 dB 2:25 12-Coro: Osanna in excelsis
DR11 -0.12 dB -15.86 dB 3:37 14-Coro: Dona nobis pacem
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 10
Official DR value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 662 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Statistics for: 11-Aria: Benedictus
Number of samples: 14998704
Duration: 5:40
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Left Right

Peak Value: -13.53 dB –- -12.42 dB
Avg RMS: -28.37 dB –- -28.23 dB
DR channel: 11.71 dB –- 11.30 dB
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Official DR Value: DR12

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 662 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

Monteverdi Choir, John Eliot Gardiner - Johann Sebastian Bach: Mass in B minor (2015) 2 CDs