Such a coincidence: minutes after the postman delivered my set of The RIAS Bach Cantata Project (a purchase based on the IRR review), Nicholas Anderson was discussing it at length on CD Review. I had been having doubts - perhaps the sound, from 60 year old broadcasts, would be unacceptable, even if the performances were good. Hearing them, I need have no doubts on either score. The performances are amazing and the sound gives no impression of age - OK, a few, but it perhaps sounds 20 years old, not 60.
It was also wonderful to hear such a doyen of reviewers as NA once again. His thoughtful, measured approached is so dreadfully missing from R3.
One quotation was so delightfully that of a high court judge of the Chatterley era that I had to write it down. Describing a turgid harpsichord player he remarked:
"It is, as some of us say nowadays, I believe, in your face." The last three words pronounced with the disdain of a Brian Sewell.
The host, AMcG, gave an ambiguous impression at the end of the review, when he said the set of nine CDs had notes and libretti, but no translations. This led me to wonder if there was documentation in English or just in German. In fact there is lavish description of the project and of Karl Ristenpart - but no translation of the cantatas themselves. Please be more precise, Mr McG.
He also produced another example of the BBC supporting the government cuts line: "Lack of libretto translations will be no problem to those with internet access" - not "All you need to do is to pop to the library and get the scores". That's right BBC, let the masses forget what a fine resource the library network has been for generations.
Let's have more Nicholas Anderson!! And a bit less Andrew McGregor perhaps.