Sergey Khachatryan BACH Sonatas & Partitas



Sergey Khachatryan's unaccompanied Bach is decidedly "old school" in its tapered phrasings and dynamics, with an emphasis on nuance and tone color rather than linear shape. You immediately glean this from the subito pianos, tenutos, and oozing legatos of the C major sonata Fugue. Yet if this particular style of Bach playing holds appeal, then Khachatryan's attractive, sweetly singing timbre and generally spot-on choice of tempos will satisfy on their own terms, to say nothing of the violinist's brisk yet relaxed delivery in fast, virtuosic movements like the G minor sonata's Presto, the B minor partita's second Double, and the E major partita's opening Prelude. However, for an ideal fusion of tonal allure and contrapuntal cogency, James Ehnes remains first choice, notably in the fugues and the stronger architectural unity that distinguishes his pacing of the great D minor Chaconne. Excellent annotations and sound. (Jed Distler)

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