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CD Review

Johann Sebastian Bach

Arranged for Guitar

  • Sonata for Violin solo #1 in G minor, BWV 1001
  • Sonata for Violin solo #2 in A minor, BWV 1003
  • Sonata for Violin solo #3 in C Major, BWV 1005
Timo Korhonen, guitar
Ondine ODE1128-2 56m DDD
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Bach's Sonatas for solo violin are certainly not new to the catalogue, but rarely have they been transcribed for guitar and recorded as such in their entirety. While many guitarists include single movements in their repertoire, Tirmo Korhonen has undertaken the challenge to transcribe the whole repertory for acoustic guitar and this intriguing CD is the fruit of his labours.

Although similar releases all have their particular flavor, Korhonen's creations remain very faithful to Bach's original conceptions and the historically informed renditions reveal the soloist's deep understanding of their style. What is also satisfying about this issue are the magnificent linear notes by Korhonen himself, where he explains his theory about the substance of these works which is an extremely helpful gesture for the uninitiated and those who are not so familiar with Bach's music.

Although these arrangements are not everyone's cup of tea, Korhonen's imaginative playing and innovative scoring give them a timbre all of their own, and these versions will most certainly augment their popularity especially among younger listeners.

Copyright © 2009, Gerald Fenech