Texte paru dans: / Appeared in:


GRAMOPHONE (10/2022)
Pour s'abonner / Subscription information


Code barres / Barcode : 5060262793343


Outil de traduction
Translator tool

Reviewer :
Malcolm Riley

Matthew Owens’s first album of Pachelbel’s organ works from The Queen’s College, Oxford (10/21) was praised for his sensitive insights into a hitherto neglected facet of this highly skilled and inventive contrapuntalist. Fugal facility is central to this new recital of 43 separate pieces, which includes Pachelbel’s largest set of Magnificat Fugues, a group of 23 dating from around 1695 onwards and which range in length between one and six minutes.

Vol 2 opens with a robust and flexible Toccata in D, married to a sturdy and rather stately Fugue in the same key. Both movements benefit from Owens’s unstuffy approach; ornamentation is applied judiciously and subject entries are allowed to stand proud from the texture. The chorale partita on Christus, der ist mein Leben comprises a dozen short variations that wend their gentle way, initially in common time before changing gear (and mood) for the final three, cast in compound time, which conclude with a dancing finale. Most interesting, however, is the seventh variation, which is notable for some eyebrow-raising, daring chromaticism, a rare occurrence in this programme.

A quintet of chorale preludes follows; unobtrusive, elegant and articulate statements, played with obvious warmth and care. Most plaintive is the treatment of Der Herr ist mein getreuer Hirt. They lead to a fine survey of Magnificat Fugues which, on paper, could be dull technical exercises, but not in Owens’s hands. Here he relishes the opportunity to squeeze as much colour out of the instrument as possible. Stop combinations (all carefully logged in the excellent booklet) are hardly ever duplicated; the gentle tremulant is employed judiciously and the pedal department is used very sparingly, which helps to make the use of full organ for the final fugue even more effective. A touch of genius is to draw just a four-foot Flute for Fugue V – perfect!

Finally, a cascade of thanks to the owners of the wonderful three-manual Bernard Aubertin 2015 house organ, situated in Fairwarp, East Sussex, for their generosity. Handsomely housed in its own organ hall, it proves to be the perfect match for this intimate and rich repertory.



Sélectionnez votre pays et votre devise en accédant au site de
Presto Classical
(Bouton en haut à gauche)
Livraison mondiale

Pour acheter l'album
ou le télécharger

To purchase the CD
or to download it

Choose your country and currency
when reaching
Presto Classical
(Upper left corner of the page)
Worldwide delivery


Cliquez l'un ou l'autre bouton pour découvrir bien d'autres critiques de CD
 Click either button for many other reviews