|Composer||Dietrich Buxtehude, Dietrich Becker, Matthias Weckmann, various|
|Conductor||Annegret Siedel, Sigrid Damm|
"Stylus phantasticus" is a mix of contradictory styles: the free flow of strongly
expressive melodies which can sometimes form jarring dissonances adds a highly
dramatic sense of tension to the otherwise ordered form of the Baroque. This way of
music making was first described in 1650 and soon made its mark, spreading northwards from Italy into the Protestant north of Europe, especially via the organ
music tradition, though the new, modern style was also developed in the chamber
music genre. As a result, this music style sounds surprisingly bold and futureorientated,
allowing itself liberties that are associated with the high art of contrapuntal technique.
The renowned Bell'arte Salzburg ensemble has a reputation for an intensity of expression, together with a lively and colourful approach to music making. All the more
reason, then, for the works recorded here to be performed by these acknowledged
specialists in historical performance practice, revealing fascinating sounds rarely heard
in the North German Baroque tradition. The art of pro-active ornamentation and phrasing is in demand here, and Bell'arte Salzburg is entirely in its element on that
count: they are truly capable of making fantastic music.