One of the most grown-up review sites around

54,416 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             


Some items
to consider


paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

100th birthday of Mieczyslaw Weinberg on December 8, 2019.
Renate Eggbrecht has recorded all 3 violin Sonatas
All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Clarissa Bevilacqua plays
Augusta Read Thomas

all Nimbus reviews

Brahms Dvorak
Brahms 2 Dvorak 7
all tudor reviews



Follow us on Twitter

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing

Sample: See what you will get

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger


Discs for review may be sent to:
Jonathan Woolf
76 Lushes Road
Essex IG10 3QB
United Kingdom


Buy through MusicWeb
for £14.99 postage paid World-wide.

Musicweb Purchase button


Johann Herman SCHEIN (1586-1630)
Opella Nova - Fontana D’Israel (1618-1626): Christ Unser Herr Zum Jordan Kam [4.55]; Wende Dich, Herr [3.41]; Die mit Tränen säen [3.22]; Freue dich des Weibesdeiner Jugend [3.51]; Lieblich und schöne sein [3.55]; Da Jakob vollendet hatte [4.44]; Unser Leben währet siebnzig Jehr [3.36]; Ich ruf zu dir, Herr Jesu Christ [2.52]; Was Betrübst du dich, meine Seele [4.55]; Aus tiefer Not schrei ich zu dir [2.54]; O Jesu Christe, Gottes sohn [4.37]; Ist nicht Ephraim mein teurer Sohn [4.10]; Erbarm dich mein [2.49]; Vom Himmel Hoch [2.04]; Christ lag in Todesbanden [4.14]; Zion Spricht; der Herr hat mich verlassen [4.46]; Komm heiliger Geist [4.31]
Ensemble Sagittarius (Dagmar Saskova (soprano); Sophie Pattey (soprano); Pierre Sciama (alto); Olivier Fichet (ténor); Marcos Loureiro de Sà (basse); J. Prahmsohler (violon); R. Martin-Alonso (ténor de viole); M. Zeoli (basse de viole); Continuo: J. Griffin (basse de viole); R. Lopes (théorbe); G. Vernhes (basson); J.M. Aristizabal (orgue de tribune))/Michel Laplénie
rec. 21-23 October 2009, Saint-Etienne-de-Baïgorry Church, Pyrenées-Atlantique, France
HORTUS 075 [66.05]

Experience Classicsonline

The great triumvirate of early baroque German composers - Schütz, Schein and Scheidt – have, in the last thirty years, grown in significance. It’s good then to welcome an increase in our knowledge and availability of the music with this fine CD.
When I first came across his music I knew Schein only as a composer of instrumental works as found in his collection entitled ‘Banchetto Musicale’ recorded by Archiv in the 1960s. Then I met him briefly as a composer for the organ. He was, after all, a church musician. He worked in Dresden and Leipzig as a ‘cantorate’ as Walter Werbeck’s excellent booklet essay describes him. Then I came across Schein as a composer of secular vocal music written in a prevailing Italian style. You might recall that Schütz had studied with Giovanni Gabrielli and brought ideas back to Germany. Anyway that was with a disc by Cantus Cölln called ‘Diletti Pastorali’ (deutsche harmonia music RD77088) with texts such as ‘O Amaryllis lovely and fair/My heart so faithful and full of love”. In addition, fairly recently, I reviewed and listened with much enjoyment to a further disc of instrumental music, mainly consisting of Schein’s dances - Courantes and Galliardes - from the ensemble Les Sacquebottiers (Ambroisie 9996). Now we encounter another aspect of Schein’s varied art.
The present disc contains extracts from two publications of sacred works, cantatas mostly based on Psalms, ‘Opella Nova’ dated 1618 and 1626 and ‘Fontana D’Israel’ (or in German ‘Israelsbrunnlein’) of 1623. These again are in the fashionable style of the time hailing from Italy although German chorale tunes are used. The former publications may use chorale texts and melodies as in ‘Vom Himmel Hoch’ but they in are the concerto style. Just one or two soloists are pitted against a solo violin or two with continuo as in the first track ‘Christ unser Herr’ for two sopranos. They also adopt the imitative style as with the soprano and violins in ‘O Jesu Christ, Gottes sohn’. In ‘Vom Himmel Hoch’ and ‘Christ Lag’ the tenor sings the chorale melody whilst the upper voices weave a complex two-part counterpoint which is loosely based on it. The point is further emphasized in the performance of ‘Komm heiliger Geist’ where, as Michael Laplénie tells us in his ‘About the recording’ essay, the tenor is placed in the balcony near the organ and away from the sopranos.
In the 1623 collection the settings are in a more madrigalian - even Canzonet – style. They are, in the main, in five voices usually with instrumental support as in ‘Unser leben’. Particularly effective, in terms of word-painting, are the two texts from that little known but wonderful ‘The Song of Songs’. In ‘Freuedich des Weibes Jugend’ the ‘dove’ is described with a lyrical, floating motif. Also notable in ‘Da Jakob Vollendet hatte’ - again from ‘Fontana D’Israel’ – are the extraordinary harmonies used in the final section for the word ‘weep’. Schein is more experimental in many works from this collection. He is not averse to chromatic writing of the sort found in the Italian Madrigals even in those of Schütz. Likewise Schein is susceptible to chromatic writing to draw out greater expressive power from the text as with ‘Erbarm dich mein’ from the ‘Opella Nova’ collection.
Schein’s texts spread across the church year. ‘O Jesu Christ’ would be suitable for Passion Week, ‘Kom Heiliger Geist’ for Pentecost and ‘Vom Himmel Hoch’ for Christmas. Other texts are more general.
The performers, especially the singers, are particularly sensitive to the words and vary the dynamics very successfully and movingly. In addition they are wonderfully supported and enhanced by the instrumentalists. The balance is ideal between all of the group. All texts are given and translated. There are photographs of the performers and, as mentioned above, an excellent essay.

Gary Higginson


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All APR reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Recordings of the Month

November 2022
Bach Orchestral Suites

del Cinque
Del Cinque Cello sonatas

Fujita Mozart
Mao Fujita Mozart

Stanczyk Acousmatic Music


October 2022

Berg Violin Concerto
Violin Concerto Elmes

DEbussy Jeux
Debussy Jeux

Romantic pioano masters
Romantic Piano Masters

The future is female - Vol 2
Volume 2 - The Dance

impromptu harp music
Complete Harp Impromptus




Making a Donation to MusicWeb

Writing CD reviews for MWI

About MWI
Who we are, where we have come from and how we do it.

Site Map

How to find a review

How to find articles on MusicWeb
Listed in date order

Review Indexes
   By Label
      Select a label and all reviews are listed in Catalogue order
   By Masterwork
            Links from composer names (eg Sibelius) are to resource pages with links to the review indexes for the individual works as well as other resources.

Themed Review pages

Jazz reviews


      Composer surveys
      Unique to MusicWeb -
a comprehensive listing of all LP and CD recordings of given works
Prepared by Michael Herman

The Collector’s Guide to Gramophone Company Record Labels 1898 - 1925
Howard Friedman

Book Reviews

Complete Books
We have a number of out of print complete books on-line

With Composers, Conductors, Singers, Instumentalists and others
Includes those on the Seen and Heard site


Nostalgia CD reviews

Records Of The Year
Each reviewer is given the opportunity to select the best of the releases

Monthly Best Buys
Recordings of the Month and Bargains of the Month

Arthur Butterworth Writes

An occasional column

Phil Scowcroft's Garlands
British Light Music articles

Classical blogs
A listing of Classical Music Blogs external to MusicWeb International

Reviewers Logs
What they have been listening to for pleasure



Bulletin Board

Give your opinions or seek answers

Pat and present

Helpers invited!

How Did I Miss That?

Currently suspended but there are a lot there with sound clips

Composer Resources

British Composers

British Light Music Composers

Other composers

Film Music (Archive)
Film Music on the Web (Closed in December 2006)

Programme Notes
For concert organizers

External sites
British Music Society
The BBC Proms
Orchestra Sites
Recording Companies & Retailers
Online Music
Agents & Marketing
Other links
Web News sites etc

A pot-pourri of articles

MW Listening Room
MW Office

Advice to Windows Vista users  
Site History  
What they say about us
What we say about us!
Where to get help on the Internet
CD orders By Special Request
Graphics archive
Currency Converter
Web Ring
Translation Service

Rules for potential reviewers :-)
Do Not Go Here!
April Fools

Return to Review Index

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.