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The sublime early-instrument ensemble Trio Settecento (1700s Trio) has taken listeners on an unprecedented country-by-country Grand Tour of the European Baroque through a series of four recordings, issued individually between 2007 and 2012. Each album provides an in-depth exploration of the musical styles of a single country — Italy, Germany, France, England. Now, the entire critically acclaimed series is available as a specially priced boxed set offering all four CDs for the price of two.
Trio Settecento brings fresh insights to music from the Age of Enlightenment through its passionate, authoritative, and distinctive interpretations. The trio of Billboard chart-topping violinist Rachel Barton Pine, cellist and violist da gamba John Mark Rozendaal, and harpsichordist and organist David Schrader perform music by composers likely to be familiar to even casual fans of Baroque music. But they also proceed to offer a wealth of delightful discoveries by composers less well known.
Audiophile Audition on A German Bouquet (audaud.com)
"The virtuosity and spirit are stunning here, going from one set of interesting musical challenges to the next, and carrying us along for the ride in a spate of emotional bliss. . . . Enthusiastically recommended!"
ClassicsToday.com on A French Soirée (www.classicstoday.com)
"I can’t emphasize enough the solid, unwavering communicative skills shown by these musicians, which culminates in one of this year’s more enjoyable - and replayable - recordings."
Gramophone on An Italian Sojourn (www.gramophone.co.uk)
"There isn’t a piece that doesn’t impress. This is as good a collection for a newcomer to the Baroque as it is for those who want to hear these works performed at a high level."
Gramophone on An English Fancy (www.gramophone.co.uk)
"Though this collection, which concludes the trio's tour of historical Europe, delves a bit earlier and broader than the ensemble's previous sojourns in Italy, Germany and France, its strengths are much the same. First, a partnership of musicians who prove that period performance need not be sonically thin and bloodless, and second, a frontal recording quality that eschews a distancing 'cathedral' acoustic and hauls the listener directly into the middle of the dance floor."