RSS feed RSS Twitter Twitter Facebook Facebook 15 Questions 15 Questions

CD Feature/ Jan Vogler: "Concerti Brillanti"

img  Tobias

“If you listen to recordings from the 1970’s and 1980’s”, Jan Vogler told us in our interview with him, “you will be surprised how few interpretations will still convince you.” It is an interesting opinion amidst the talk of how futile it is to even try to reproduce the magic of the supposedly “golden years” of classical music releases today – and a first explanation why “Concerti Brillanti” sounds so succinctly and unmistakably like a 21st century album.

If you bundle this train of thought with the always positvely critical and ever-inquisitive mind of Reinhard Goebel (conducting the Münchner Kammerorchester on this occasion), then you end up with a recording which doesn’t even waste a second copying the sound of abovementioned recordings from the 1970s and 1980s, but instead sails towards uncharted waters. The combination of digital precision and thrust when it comes to production, absolute clarity in the instrumental timbres and of organic layering in the arrangements make the CD a fresh and lively statement of unfiltered energy. When Vogler travels back a full 300 years in musical history, he expects the methodes, insights and techniques of an instrumentalist to not stand still either and to go hand in hand with the most up-to-date technology in order to be able to express his inmost convictions. And then, in this particular case, there may even have been a second reason for this approach:

“Concerti Brillanti” contains three world premiere recordings and it seems as though Jan Vogler wanted them to shine in all their timeless glory, rather than present them as yet another stuffy discovery from the vaults. The elegance and romance of Friedrich Hartmann Graf, the lean splendour of Johann Adolph Hasse as well as the creative opulence of Johann Michael Haydn now seem to speak to us from our own time and as immediate as any contemporary composition. The slow second movement of the “Concerto in A Major” by Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach especially (the only previously documtened work on display here), is as brooding and halucinogenic as any movie score. Vogler is always in the centre of attention, but his interpretations are marked by a strong respect for the texture of a piece and for playing an assigned part in its overall purpose. In the Largo of the Bach-Concerto, his concrete melodic lines prevent the track from sliding down into oblivion, preparing for the upbeat resolution in the finale. Elesewhere, he lends a furious and unadjusted note to the music, lest it should turn too sweet or provides ragged edges where it risks becoming overly smooth. And just as often, surprisingly perhaps for a solo recording, he takes a step back and joins the ranks of the Münchner Kammerorchester, whipping it forward with powerful propulsion.

In his versions, it is hard to believe these concertos have never been performed in a studio before. “Concerti Brillanti” is a disc which does not need several spins before making sense, even though it does win with each listen. Jan Vogler may not hold many recordings from the past in high esteem. But this disc has a good chance of still convincing audiences in twenty to thirty years from now.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: Jan Vogler
Homepage: Sony BMG Masterworks

Related articles

Moritzburg Festival 2008: Reaches out to the young
Even though it is still ...
Xavier de Maistre: The Piano should have been a Harp
French Harpist Xavier de Maistre ...
Murray Perahia: Bach Partitas with a steady hand
Pianist Murray Perahia has recuperated ...
Midori: Gets extrovert on Bach
Violinist Midori will release her ...
Paavo Järvi: Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik
Paavo Järvi and the Deutsche ...
CD Feature/ Sol Gabetta: "Il Progetto Vivaldi"
The range of emotions is ...
The Fibonacci Sequence: "John McCabe - Chamber Works"
Yearning and demanding: The night ...
CD Feature/ Lauma Skride: "Fanny Mendelssohn-Hensel - The Year"
Lauma remains lucid and on ...
CD Feature/ Jan Vogler: "My Tunes"
Applies a different set of ...
15 Questions to Jan Vogler
There's something unusual about Jan ...
A royal occasion
Jan Vogler presents "Fürstenberg Classics"

Partner sites