Album: Buxtehude, VII Suonate, Opus 1/Purcell Quartet (Chandos)

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The Independent Culture

Marooned in Lübeck, Buxtehude is remembered chiefly for his organ works, a daughter Bach did not wish to marry, and one exquisite cantata, "Membra Jesu Nostri".

Shades of that cantata can be heard in the Purcell Quartet's thoughtful performance of Buxtehude's earliest surviving sonatas, most particularly in his declamatory use of chromatics and the gentle triple-time dances. The stylistic model is Italian, though filtered through a distinctly Hanseatic reserve. This is a charming performance of music lost in translation.