52,943 reviews
and more.. and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here



International mailing

  Founder: Len Mullenger             Editor in Chief: John Quinn               Contact Seen and Heard here  

Some items
to consider

£11 post-free anywhere
(currently suspended)


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

Bruno Monteiro (violin)

More Preludes to Chopin
Kenneth Hamilton (piano)

Special Price and we are still delivering

Recordings of the Month


Feinberg Piano Sonatas

Schoenberg Violin Concerto

Early Keyboard

Nun Danket Alle Gott
Now Everyone Thanks God


Haydn Scottish Songs

Choral Music

Liszt Sonata

Renaissance Bohemia


Hahn Complete Songs

Piano Sonatas 6,7,8 Osborne

REVIEW Plain text for smartphones & printers

Support us financially by purchasing this from

Carl Philipp Emmanuel BACH (1714-1788)
Cello Concerto Wq.170 in A minor (1750) [23:00]
Cello Concerto Wq.171 in B flat major (1751) [20:26]
Cello Concerto Wq.172 in A major (1753) [17:17]
Julian Steckel (cello)
Stuttgarter Kammerorchester/Susanne von Gutzeit
rec. 19-21 May 2015 Göppingen Stadthalle, Göppingen, Germany

Carl Philipp Emmanuel Bach wrote his three cello concerti in the early 1750s. Here are spirited and highly enjoyable versions of these popular works, played by Julian Steckel and the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra, led by Susanne von Gutzeit.

The performances, on modern instruments, remind listeners how the much difference between historically informed and conventional performance practice has narrowed. The old Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra of Karl Munchinger’s era produced a very warm and sometimes cloying sound. Today the orchestra has a much leaner, but not acidic sound, and its interpretations have been influenced by intervening years of discoveries about Eighteenth Century performance conventions.

Julian Steckel is a young German cellist who has also recorded Korngold and Bloch, suggesting a wide range of musical interest. He is technically assured, but just as important, really seems to enjoy the onrush of notes that Bach provides. Conductor Susanne von Gutzeit is in accord, which results in performances that are on the happy side of nervous energy. That is to say, this recording does not make C.P.E. Bach sound quite as neurotic as some. Nonetheless, even after decades of listening to these pieces, it is still wonderfully strange music, surprising listeners by lurching headlong into unexpected regions. Many interpreters treat C.P.E. Bach as a proto-romantic, or even as a voice speaking to our own anxious time. Steckel and von Gutzeit seem to anchor him more firmly in his own era, with no musical loss.

I call attention to Steckel’s gentle playing at the opening of the B flat concerto (Wq. 171), the excitement he brings to the end of the A minor concerto (Wq. 170), and the forward motion that all of these musicians bring to the slow movements, which some players make static and dull.

These are lively performances of three outstanding pre-classical cello concerti, full of drama, but more genial than disturbed.

Richard Kraus
Previous review: Michael Cookson



Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical

Nimbus Podcast

Obtain 10% discount

Special offer 50% off
15CDs £83 incl. postage

Musicweb sells the following labels

Altus 10% off
Atoll 10% off
CRD 10% off
Hallé 10% off
Lyrita 10% off
Nimbus 10% off
Nimbus Alliance
Prima voce 10% off
Red Priest 10% off
Retrospective 10% off
Saydisc 10% off
Sterling 10% off

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
Seen & Heard
Editor Emeritus
   Bill Kenny
MusicWeb Webmaster
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger