This is a superb recording of the Two-Part and Sinfonias (Three-Part Inventions) of Johann Sebastian Bach. Kenneth Gilbert is a wonderful interpreter of Bach's keyboard music and in this recording plays an instrument made in 1671 by Jan Couchet that was subsequently enlarged in 1778. The Two-Part Inventions and Sinfonias consist of 15 parts; they were written as technical exercises and as composition demonstration pieces originally for his son Wilhelm Friedemann. The various pieces were probably written separately and were gathered together by Bach in major/minor key sequence and published in 1723. The recording is clear and well balanced. Kenneth Gilbert plays beautifully; the music is lively without being ostentatious.
The young, virtuoso a cappella ensemble VOCES8 return to disc on Signum with a sumptuous collection of early works by Henry Purcell, one of England’s greatest composers. Joined by the specialist early music ensemble ‘Les Inventions’, the group explores Purcell’s astoundingly diverse output. There is hardly a genre in which he did not express himself: anthems, odes, funeral music, semi–operas, masques, sonatas, consort–music, songs and catches populate his extraordinarily multifaceted oeuvre. It is this astonishing diversity that Signum and VOCES8 celebrate.