<< -- 2 -- Robert Hugill EMINENTLY LISTENABLE
The Ensemble plays very crisply with strong and vigorous attack; the group's playing style is quite aggressive and high octane [listen -- track 1, 0:32-1:14]. Their playing in the slow movements shows that they can play delicately [listen -- track 14, 0:00-1:07] and spin long lines [listen -- track 5, 0:37-1:13 and track 11, 0:27-1:15], but in the fast movements their style can get a little wearing [listen -- track 3, 0:00-1:00]. On the solo violin, Pedrona has a strong bright tone which can get a little steely, particularly in the high lying passages. There were a number of moments when I would have liked more warmth and variation of tone [listen -- track 4, 0:57-1:48].
Many of these criticisms, unfortunately, may be the fault of the recording as the group seem to have been rather closely recorded in an over-lively acoustic. The Chiesa Maddonna dell'Ulivetto in Montericco di Albinea seems to have a generous acoustic which would make choral music interesting, but seems rather unsuitable to the music on this disc.
Ensemble Guidantus is an attractive and lively group. These concertos are under represented in the catalogue and Ensemble Guidantus gives us versions which, if not ideal, are eminently listenable.