Gramophone Editor's Choice
The bad news here is substantial: you have to read an asterisk and a footnote to see that you don't get all of the pieces in the track list in complete form. The Overture in F major, TWV55:F16 is missing a few movements, which you have to download, and to boot you get no instructions on how to go about that or how to apply any credit you might get for having bought the physical album. This shows a rather haphazard attitude toward programming. The good news: the English historical-instrument group Florilegium has a nice way with Telemann's pastoral mood, on full display in the opening Concerto in E minor for flute, oboe d'amore, strings, and continuo, TWV53:E1. Sample the opening "Andante" for the best of the bunch and also for a taste of Florilegium's silvery, rather low-energy sound: it's a matter of taste, but it's undeniably carefully executed. For no very good reason, there's also one vocal work, the short cantata Ihr Völker hört, TWV1:921, mixed in with the instrumental works, but mezzo-soprano Claire Wilkinson has the right-size voice for the two arias and single recitative that make up the work. Two of the concertos feature recorder in the hands of Florilegium director Ashley Solomon, a talented and fluent player. The rather watery church sound is a drawback, but there are several high points here that may commend the disc to Telemann lovers.