Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Jean-Marie Leclair, John Holloway, Jaap ter Linden|
Leclair: Sonatas (Troisième Livre de Sonates Op 5) /Holloway · ter Linden · Mortensen
Fit for a Prince
M. De Sapio | Alexandria, VA | 09/13/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I have become an ardent fan of ECM's ongoing series of recordings featuring baroque violinist John Holloway and his friends. In this sixth and most recent installment, Holloway explores the music of the French violinist-composer Jean-Marie Leclair (1697-1764), whose musical language blends elements of the French and Italian baroque. Specifically, Holloway has chosen five sonatas from the composer's Opus 5, which he deems the pinnacle of Leclair's sonata output (indeed, Leclair's music is always charming and well-crafted, but these Opus 5 works have an eloquence that sets them apart). Although his sonatas follow the four-movement pattern established by Corelli, Leclair typically includes a rondeau - a distinctively French form, full of grace and tenderness, built on repetition of a refrain. And his ruminative slow movements, such as the adagio of the A minor sonata on this disc, enhance Corelli's regular phrase structure with colorful chord progressions and far-flung harmonic perambulations.
Holloway is at his best here, with his trademark timbre - rich and smoky, with a bright glint at the center - as well as his relaxed fluency on his instrument which serves the sweetness of Leclair's cantabile lines. Holloway, Mortensen, and ter Linden are so much more than a violin soloist and his dutiful accompanists; they are a trio in the true sense of the word, a team of equals who seem to think and breathe as one. As on all of Holloway's ECM releases, the recorded sound is wonderfully clear and present. The CD booklet, a work of art in itself, includes an interview with Holloway about Leclair as well as a reproduction of one of the sonata movements. In short, Holloway and Company have once again dusted off a lesser-known baroque master and served up performances fit for a prince. We can only wonder where they will take us next.
Sonata opus 5 no. 8 in D major
Sonata opus 5 no. 7 in A minor
Sonata opus 5 no. 1 in A major
Sonata opus 5 no. 3 in E minor
Sonata opus 5 no. 4 in B-flat major