This is an attractive
collection of mostly chorale-based pieces,
in the first instance from the Harmonische
Seelenlust of Kauffmann, and, from a
generation later, galant works
by Krebs and Homilius. The selections
from Kauffman's collection include some
of the compositions with obbligato oboe
and the whole CD is sensitively played
by both performers.
The new organ in the
Basque village of Baignorry was built
by the relatively unknown Remy Mahler
in the style of an 18th century South
German instrument such as those of Hasenmeyer,
Seuffert etc. The emphasis is on the
variety of charming 8' colour. Piffaro,
Salicional, Viola de Gamba are all present
in addition to various flutes and the
Principal of the Hauptwerk. This is
clearly an organ of a high artistic
quality - Mahler is a name to look out
for. As far as 'speaking the right language'
the organ is perfect for the repertoire.
However, it must be said that despite
the charm of Kauffman's offerings, the
primary interesting factor in the Harmonische
Seelenlust remains the composer's registration
instructions for a number of the pieces;
in fact this is the primary registrational
source from the time and area of Bach.
Kauffmann was organist of the Thayssner/Wender
organ in Merseburg Cathedral. One of
the most obvious aspects of this instrument
was its large number of manual 16' stops,
a feature reflected in Kauffmann's indications.
Unfortunately Baignory has no manual
16’ stops, and even where Kauffmann's
instructions are possible, Moro doesn't
always choose to follow them. The registration
for the alio modo setting of Wie
Schon leuchtet der Morgenstern,
with the oboe, (upperwork plus Zymbelstern
- Kauffmann writes Principal 8 against
Vox Humana 8), could only work with
a microphone on the oboe and not in
an acoustic situation, I believe!
aside, this remains a thoroughly enjoyable
release. It is a shame, especially given
the stingy TPT that the opportunity
wasn't taken to record some of Krebs'
pieces for organ and oboe as well. Shame
also that the lengthy notes about the
organ and the music are only in French
and that nothing is written about the