SOLO TRAVERSO - Grégoire Jeay (Flute)

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SOLO TRAVERSO - Grégoire Jeay (Flute) - Sylvain Bergeron (Archlute) - 771028236015 - Released: January 2012 - Fidelio FACD035

Georg Philipp Telemann
- Fantasy No. 3 in B minor for flute without bass
Johann Joachim Quantz
- Allegro in D major
- Capricio in D minor
- Capricio VII in A minor
Grégoire Jeay
- Fifteen Variations on the Theme of La Folia
Sylvain Bergeron
- Prélude, improvisation
Pierre Danican Philidor
- Suite V in E minor for treble instrument and continuo
Jean Daniel Braun
- Minuetto in E minor
- Adagio in B minor
- Gigue in B minor
Anton Stamitz
- Capricio in G major for flute without bass
Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach
- Sonata in A minor for solo flute

A superb recording of Baroque music oddities and rarities that, apart from the C.P.E. Bach, seem to make their first public appearance on this new CD by Grégoire Jeay playing a Baroque tranverse flute. He is a regular member of many of the best early music ensembles, including La Nef and Tafelmusik. As the title suggests, all the pieces are for solo flute except for the Suite by Philidor, in which the continuo part is played by lutenist Sylvain Bergeron, co-founder of La Nef, and a well-established recording artist who has played with Emma Kirkby and Jordi Savall, and many other period performers. The disc also contains a short composition for solo archlute by Bergeron himself.

I will be the first one to admit that the prospect of listening to 64 minutes of solo flute music, barren and sterile of harmony, didn't fill me with a whole lot of enthusiastic anticipation, but not one to dismiss a recording until at least one audition, I gave it it's due time in the CD player. Let me just say that it was a pleasure to listen to from start to finish. All the pieces on this CD, including the new works by Bergeron and Jeay, are gems of the genre. The flute itself, a copy of the G. A. Rottenburgh made by Claire Soubeyran, produces a beautiful, mellow tone and lends itself well to the constant note shaping technique that Grégoire Jeay employs. And the 14-course lute, crafted in Germany by Andreas V. Holst, has a rich and vibrant tone that makes an impressive entrance midway through the disc. And the one piece by Philidor where the flute and lute play together, is not only a miniature masterpiece, it's a joy to listen to.

I will not go into all the technical details noted in the booklet, but one of the most impressive aspects of this CD is the quality of the sound recording. It's a 24-bit Xtract HD process, with which all the best possible care is used from start to finish to insure the end result is a recording as close to natural as possible. For example, some of the recording equipment used is battery powered to eliminate electrical current noise or interference. The tangible quality of the sound is one of the first things that struck me as soon as the music started. This is definitely a must-have CD for audiophiles, for flute fans, for lute fans, for baroque fans, heck for anyone.

Jean-Yves Duperron - February 2012