This disc is really something special. Collectors are so spoiled for choice in the baroque repertoire at present, particularly on period instruments, but even in a glutted market this disc stands out for imaginative repertoire selection and outstanding interpretation. Its particularly gratifying, in these days of complete editions of everything, to see a discerning artist like Giuliano Carmignola choose four remarkably diverse works by three different composers, and simply play the living daylights out of them. The result roundly disproves the notion that Italian baroque violin concertos all sound the same, a point made even more forcefully by imaginative continuo work (on harpsichord, lute, and organ) by the Venice Baroque Orchestra that helps to emphasize each pieces individual character. The two Vivaldi concertos, for example, couldnt be more different.
The Mariinsky Orchestra recordings with Denis Matsuev, "the Siberian bear with the fastest paws in the Arctic," have all offered classic Russian virtuosity at its best. This one, containing three distinctly high-spirited works, makes a great place to start with the series, and it's hard to imagine the listener who wouldn't succumb to its charms.