Here is a case of expectations richly rewarded. Telemann's flute quartets are vibrant and tuneful, at times making great demands on the soloists. The Musica Antiqua Koln are in all ways up to the challenge, delivering a musical bouquet that is at various turns elegant, soothing, and exciting.
A marvelous treatment of Pachelbel's lesser known works with a definitive performance of the all-too famous Canon. Too many interpreters of the Canon use the wrong tempo for this work, too slow and sentimental. This group does not and they have made it possible to listen to this work without gagging. They also do a wonderful job of presenting Buxtehude's chamber music. This composer is too often associated with ponderous Baroque organ music.
Música Callada (Music of Silence) is a very special work, one of the most beautiful and elusive in the entire piano repertoire. It is extremely difficult to perform. On the one hand, there’s the temptation to stretch each piece out hypnotically, if monotonously, while quicker speeds preserve the music’s melodic essence at the expense of much of its atmosphere and harmonic richness. For although much of the music is indeed quiet, and none of it moves quickly, it is all meaningful. Mompou himself found the perfect balance between incident and repose, and of all the pianists since, Jenny Lin arguably comes closest to doing the same, only in much better sound. It’s not so much that her tempos match Mompou’s own (she’s actually not copying him–it would hardly be possible in a work containing 28 individual pieces), but rather that her phrasing and sense of timing let the music breathe and sing with its own special poetry. To take just one example, consider the sadness that Lin finds in the fourth piece, “Afflitto e penoso”, by allowing the piece’s harmonic color time to speak simply and eloquently.