Love Naxos' 18th-century music CDs; performances are sluggis
Catone in Utica | Proconsularis | 11/29/2006
(2 out of 5 stars)
"I love Naxos' 18th-century music CDs; it's always a treat to hear first-ever recordings of shamefully neglected works like the symphonies of Johann Stamitz and GB Sammartini (pivotal in the development of the symphony!), as well as contemporaries of Haydn and Mozart such as Ordonez and Vanhal.
The performances of the concerti, though? Idiosyncratic to say the least. Muller-Bruhl takes the third movement of the first concerto, an allegro, as if it were andante. The result is like pouring molassas over the orchestra and the soloist. What was he thinking?!
Indeed, every movement tends toward slugishness, but in the allegro moderato first movements it's a bit more justified. But three plodding movements in a row for every concerto makes the music sound like Haydn's Seven Last Words.
Please, Naxos: no more Muller-Bruhl recordings! Stick with the New Zealand CO, Nicholas Esterhazy Orchestra, Toronto Camerata, et al, and put Muller-Bruhl out to pasture."