Metamorphosis - Bach: Cello Suites Nos. 1, 2, & 3 / Carrettin
Zachary Carrettín writes: “I chose “Metamorphosis” as the title of this album for several reasons. Having lived with these works for a quarter century, they have changed me, and I have changed along the way. During this project my dear friend of thirty-three years, and former mentor, passed away. Ken and I spent most of my first master’s degree studying Bach manuscripts and first editions, and I think his influence is with me all the time. He always felt that the treatises and other primary sources were there to provide possibilities rather than to limit our scope. Our conversations went deep and wide, and included a couple of extended journeys in Europe and the United States, studying manuscripts together. I recorded these pieces during the Covid-19 pandemic, just weeks after my uncle in Italy passed away, and my aunt in Florida passed away, and while my dear friend in Colorado was preparing himself to pass onward from this life as well. Due to Coronavirus concerns, my partner in life and music–Mina, our chihuahua Apple, and I drove thirty hours each way from Colorado to Virginia and back, not stopping at restaurants nor hotels, to make this recording at the chapel of Sono Luminus Studios…”
The metamorphosis referred to in the title of this release by violist Zachary Carrettín is that experienced by the musician himself, who writes that the Bach Suites for solo cello “have changed me, and I have changed along the way.” He is not the first to have recorded the cello suites on a viola, and his performance is not of the pathbreaking sort; it does not contain any of the various systems and innovations that have been applied to the suites. It’s a satisfying performance, but the main thing here is the engineering and how it intersects with the playing and with Carrettín’s instrument, an 18th century viola by an unknown maker fitted with gut strings and historical bridge, tailpiece, and bass bar. Carrettín also uses a historical tenor viol bow. The intimate sound catches numerous small details of the instrument’s sound without devolving into heavy breathing, extraneous instrument noise, etc. A fine audiophile Bach release.
– AllMusicGuide.com (James Manheim)
The works’ depth and beauty are unmatched when they are heard on cello, but their brighter elements are particularly well highlighted here, resulting in a disc that cannot supplant the many fine cello versions of the music but that supplements and complements them to excellent effect.
Catalog Number: DSL-92247
Label: Sono Luminus
Number of Discs: 1
Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach
Performer: Zachary Carrettín