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CD Review

Johann Melchior Molter

Orchestral & Chamber Music

  • Overture MWV III/9
  • Sonata MWV XI/13
  • Concerto MWV VI/21
  • Sonata Op. 1 #6 MWV XI/6
  • Overture MWV III/13
Nova Stravaganza/Siegbert Rempe
Dabringhaus & Grimm 3411279-2 66m DDD
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MD&G continues to unearth composers that are either almost completely unknown or have only been recorded very sporadically over the last half century or so. The name of Johann Melchior Molter was completely unfamiliar to me before I received this splendid disc in the post, but after listening through the music a few times, I can confirm that he deserves more than a mere mention in the history books.

Nova Stravaganza are a fine period ensemble although their interpretations have occasionally fallen short of the inspirational. They give a fine account of the Overture in C minor which has some delightful work for bassoon. The Sonata in G minor contains an important solo part for the transverse flute and this is also winningly done by Ildiko Kertész. The F Major Overture is also well played although I thought the music remained slightly earthbound and could have done with a little more 'lift' at times, especially in the faster movements. The F minor sonata is another well crafted work whilst the short Concerto in E flat demonstrates Molter's prowess with wind instruments.

The recording is spacious although it can be slightly sharp on the untrained ear but otherwise the ambience suits the music just fine. I enjoyed reading the detailed notes that provide exhaustive biographical detail on Molter with a smattering of historic snapshots of the time in which he worked. This disc is definitely recommended to those searching out obscure baroque music and to more besides.

Copyright © 2004, Gerald Fenech