Monday, 7 November 2016

Alison Balsom - Jubilo

Rating: 5/5

Another cracker from Alison Balsom

This is yet another very fine disc from Alison Balsom.  She continues to be both a genuinely world-class musician and a great ambassador for classical music.

In Jubilo, she has recorded a selection of Baroque concerti and transcriptions by Fasch, Torelli, Corelli and J.S. Bach.  All are fine works, to which Balsom lends real class with superb playing.  Some thrilling, stratospherically high pyrotechnics are made to sound as natural as breathing, and the slower more evocative passages are simply lovely.  It is here that Balsom really shines, I think, because she gives the music real depth and feeling, coupled often with a genuine gentleness and subtlety which isn't often associated with the trumpet. 

The ensemble playing and singing is excellent – as you'd expect from such superstars as Pavlo Beznosiuk, Stephen Cleobury, and a world-class orchestra and chorus.  It's a lovely programme, helped by transcriptions of a couple of Bach's greatest hits, and the whole thing is a real pleasure.

I think that this is a disc with real popular appeal, but which also has genuine musical merit so that crusty old classical listeners like me will find it very rewarding, too.  It is, in short, a cracking, hugely enjoyable disc which is warmly recommended.

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