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Benjamin Katz
American Record Guide, September 2013

Brown and Baird are strong and sensitive interpreters of this intricate music. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide



Mark Sealey
Classical Net, June 2013

The playing of both Brown and Baird is full of life and attack, humor and confidence: listen to the muscularly-arpeggiated runs in the presto[tr.3] of that F Major work (F 10), for example. It’s not exactly carefree extrovert expression because it leaves room for the listener’s response. It’s inviting and even mildly quizzical. Yet authoritative in just that way that we need it to be. On the other hand, when depth of feeling, reflection and tarrying are required, as in the gorgeous adagio of the D Major (F 3 [tr 11]), Brown is able to bring to bear an attentiveness, closeness and affection for the music which really makes one stop and think.

If you’re collecting this series, don’t hesitate. This is a splendid addition. If you’re as yet unaware of the strengths of Friedemann, it’s likely that the quality of Brown’s and Baird’s playing will tempt you to explore the earlier releases. And keenly await the next. While you may initially approach the music as a polished chandelier through which to observe the ballrooms of Dresden, Halle and Berlin, your focus soon rests on the colors and texture of the glass itself. © 2013 Classical Net Read complete review



Byzantion
MusicWeb International, April 2013

The Sonatas in C and F continue to mine the vein of melodious warmth and sparkling elegance that runs through Bach’s music, whilst the double sonata/concerto in F…doubles the lavish keyboard legerdemain.

…Sonata in D…is a complex, hypnotic work, thriving on its own harmonic instability and other stylistic cloak-and-dagger features. Brown tackles it with aplomb. An erstwhile organ student of Naxos stalwart Wolfgang Rübsam, she has a light, easy-going but precise touch. This she combines with gentle rubato to communicate expressive warmth and, especially in the two shorter sonatas, no small sense of diversion.

Sound quality is very good. The English-German notes by Brown herself are enthusiastic, well written and informative…a quality entry in a rewarding series. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, April 2013

Wilhelm Friedmann, the eldest son and a pupil of Johann Sebastian Bach, died in 1784, leaving behind the impression of a difficult and possibly dissolute person. The  facts tell a different story, as circumstances tossed him around, often without permanent employment and leading a nomadic life. A prolific composer who wrote in many genres, his lack of a settled existence accounted for much of his music being lost, and little appeared in print during his lifetime. Maybe he did not possess the readily attractive melodic invention of his father, though as this fourth volume in this on-going series clearly demonstrates, he was a gifted craftsman. At his best he could generate a high degree of exciting musical inspiration…Julia Brown’s performances lack nothing in impact, the disc offering three solo sonatas and one for two harpsichords that is often referred to as a concerto. Numbering does not designate the order of composition, number 202 probably an early work, and, with its joyful outer movements, it is my favourite piece on the disc. Indeed if you want an introduction to the composer, this would make the very happy starting point. Playing a mighty powerful modern instrument, Brown then combines with Barbara Baird in the ‘Concerto’ where they bring admirable zest to the outer movements. From a recording point of view the series gets better, this present release as good as you will find in the genre. © David’s Review Corner





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