Bach: Complete Fantasies and Fugues
- CDR 90000 012
Cedille Selects tracks are designed to provide a representative overview of the album
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A major portion of JS Bach's organ masterpieces -- his complete Fantasies, Fantasies & Fugues, and isolated Fugues -- is contained on this CD.
"The fantasies on this recording represent a wide range of composition, from the very freely composed to works that are obviously contrapuntal," writes Schrader in the liner notes.
In this, his second Bach organ recording for Cedille, Schrader returns to the Jaeckel organ at the Salem Lutheran Church in Wausau, Wisconsin. Modeled on the late 17th-century northwestern German organs of Arp Schnitger, it's the sort of instrument Bach knew well and made good use of during his career.
The organ is well suited to Schrader's "unusually light and rhythmically quick pace," writes Joseph Stevenson in Stevenson's Classical Compact Disc Guide (July-September, 1992), in a perceptive review of Schrader's complete Bach Toccatas and Fugues.
Critics have praised Schrader for eschewing the menacing, melodramatic, Phantom-of-the-Opera intonations of other Bach organists. Denver's Rocky Mountain News noted with pleasure the absence of "heaven-storming theatrics"; the San Jose Mercury News said Schrader's "minute rhythmic variations turn these familiar Bach works into a vivid listening experience"; and the Chicago Tribune lauded his "nimble-fingered panache."