“Complete Organ Works” of MARTIN RADECK, ARNOLD MATTHIAS BRUNCKHORST, JOHANN STEFFENS, DANIEL ERICH, CHRISTIAN RITTER, JOHANN NICOLAUS HANFF – Friedhelm Flamme, organ (Christian-Vater-Orgel, Bockhorn, Germany) – CPO

by | Jun 30, 2008 | SACD & Other Hi-Res Reviews | 0 comments

“Complete Organ Works” of MARTIN RADECK, ARNOLD MATTHIAS BRUNCKHORST, JOHANN STEFFENS, DANIEL ERICH, CHRISTIAN RITTER, JOHANN NICOLAUS HANFF – Friedhelm Flamme, organ (Christian-Vater-Orgel von St. Cosmas und St. Damian, Bockhorn, Germany) – Recorded September 2006 – CPO Multichannel SACD 777271-2, 68:51 **** [Distr. by Naxos]:

Friedhelm Flamme has recorded a series of discs for CPO – all SACDs to date – which explore the baroque organs and organ music of North Germany. Most, if not all of the names of these composers will be new discoveries and pleasant ones at that.

All the composers here had top level positions as organist. Radeck had posts in Copenhagen and in Germany, Brunckhorst, among several posts was the court organist in Hanover, and Steffens, the earliest composer here born in 1560, had a post in Lüneberg. Erich was a pupil of Buxtehude, Ritter operated in Halle, Stockholm (at the royal court) and Hamburg, and Hanff also in Hamburg finally getting the post he’d long wanted, organist at the cathedral in Schleswig.

The program is a very well-considered mix of preludes, canons, fugues and choral preludes – the sort of music much played at services before the start, after the end and during Communion. The organ has survived from its 1721 build in excellent shape; for one thing the high lead content of the pipes preserved them from being melted down for armaments during WW II.

Flamme’s performances are uniformly excellent; everything sounds just right. The rhythms are not mechanical but natural, the combinations of stops chosen with care. This is no organ blast!  The booklet is superb; readers are given photographs and the specifications, and in addition, the registrations used for each piece.

The recording quality on this SACD is first-class; the organ is captured very well without loud noises from the blower. This disc is very highly recommended to those wanting to explore off the main path of Buxtehude and Bach.

— Peter Joelson

 

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