Buxtehude: Praeludium in E minor, BuxWV 152; Ach Herr, mich armen Sünder, BuxWV 178; Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam, BuxWV 180

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COMPOSERS: Buxtehude
LABELS: Dacapo
ALBUM TITLE: Organ Works, Vol. 2
WORKS: Praeludium in E minor, BuxWV 152; Ach Herr, mich armen Sünder, BuxWV 178; Christ unser Herr zum Jordan kam, BuxWV 180
PERFORMER: Bine Bryndorf (organ)
CATALOGUE NO: 8.226008
I very much enjoyed the first volume of Bine Bryndorf’s projected complete survey of Buxtehude’s organ music (reviewed in May). For the music of Vol. 2 she has once again chosen the famous 17th-century instrument by Johan Lorentz at St Mary’s Church, Elsinore, where Buxtehude himself had been organist from 1660 until 1667, when he made his final move to Lübeck. Since then the organ has undergone substantial conversions and renovations, mainly by Marcussen and Frobenius, though important features from Buxtehude’s time have survived. Bryndorf’s programme consists of five freely composed preludes and nine chorale preludes which draw upon the traditional melodies of Lutheran hymnody. The former contain sections which demonstrate Buxtehude’s famed contrapuntal skill, while the chorale-anchored pieces reveal a wealth of contrasting techniques. One of them, BuxWV 215, is often played on a harpsichord since it was written for manuals without pedals. Bryndorf’s rhythmically disciplined playing, her feeling for Buxtehude’s declamatory gestures and her crystal-clear articulation have considerable appeal. The C major, BuxWV 136, and A major, BuxWV 151 Preludes have a transparency and a radiant warmth which complement their extrovert, dance-like character. There is a useful and informative commentary by Buxtehude scholar Kerala Snyder. The recorded sound, as in Vol. 1, is excellent. Nicholas Anderson

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