Bach's organ music towers above so much else in the Western canon, that it needs no comment. But as one who enjoys going deeply into a composer for sever days, I found this set superb. I've listened to the entire set from start to finish several times; there's simply nothing else I've ever heard that compares. I'm not an organist, so I can't speak to the technical details of the performance - but Marie-Claire Alain, to my ear, delivers the perfect match of restraint, virtuosity, and grandeur for this work.
Seven different organs from the Swiss firm of Metzler carry the weight of the project, which is where Herrick's consistency begins. Other complete Bach collections use many and varied makes and locations in the hope of keeping our interest alive. Herrick's journey brings us a sound that has enough variety to show the Metzler's ability to bear a responsible approach to Bach despite their modern construction.
Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Gustav Leonhardt were at the forefront of the early music movement that swept classical music in the ’70s and ’80s, performing pieces from the canon with period instruments in order to re-create the original intent of the composer as closely as possible. And their most enduring legacy is right here, the complete survey of Bach’s sacred cantatas that they began in 1971 and completed in 1988. This body of work has served as a beacon for younger musicians seeking a fuller understanding of Bach’s work, and will forever be regarded as one of the pioneering projects in the history of recording classical music. 60 CDs in all.
Originally released between 1975 to 1991 on the now-defunct Calliope label, Andre Isoir's recordings of the complete organ works of Bach have been unanimously acclaimed by both the press and the public. La Dolce Volta now offers these landmark recordings (unavailable since 2008), completely remastered, in a deluxe, specially priced boxed set. The set includes a 152 page, full color booklet rich with photos and information about the music and the recordings.
This 1990 Digital Recording is a must for Bach's CD Collector. Recorded using historic organs on which some were played himself by Bach. Marie-Claire Alain's playing here is more in historic and faithful to performance practice. The tempos and the registrations are well planned and the approach of playing is spontaneous and simple. The spirituality of the performer is so evident here.