Corelli: Sonate a violino e violone o cimbalo, opera quinta

Enrico Gatti violin, Gaetano Nasillo cello, Guido Morini harpsichord
126:30 (2 CDs in cardboard sleeve)
Arcana A 397

Recorded in 2003, Gatti’s performances are less fussy than Tur Bonet’s in the continuo department; in many ways, though, that puts the violin playing under even deeper scrutiny. A violinist of his class (and here he keeps the best of company!) is the complete master of these seminal works and is at liberty to mould them as he wishes. Nasillo shows just how attentive he is by sometimes imitating Gatti’s ornamentation. For those who like to know such things, the sonatas are re-ordered (I: 1, 7, 2, 8, 3 & 9; II: 4, 10, 5, 11, 6 & 12); thus, although the sequence is disturbed, the da chiesa  and da camera  pieces are interspersed with one another, while the numerical order within each of the two sets is preserved. (In fact, the key sequence is slightly improved by the change!) Gatti’s introductory essay to the recording makes for interesting reading – especially his rebuke of an English critic who wrote about one of his earlier recordings…

Brian Clark