Krieger: Complete Harpsichord and Organ Music

Krieger: Complete Harpsichord and Organ Music
Composer Johann Krieger
Artist Alejandro Casal harpsichord and organ
Format 2 CD
Cat. number 95873
EAN code 5028421958736
Release August 2020

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About this release

Johann Krieger (1652-1735) won the esteem of Handel, no less, for the skill of his counterpoint and the inventive power of his organ music. For the theorist Mattheson, Krieger was likewise the pre-eminent exponent of complex counterpoint in his generation. Yet music-lovers have hitherto been able to sample Krieger’s work only in excerpted compilations. The present album occupies a unique place in the catalogue as by far the most extensive survey of Krieger on disc, containing his two published collections of keyboard music.

CD1 is filled with the six harpsichord suites which were published in 1697 in Krieger’s home town of Nürnberg, though by then the composer himself was employed as an organist in the Saxon town of Zittau: a post he filled for 54 years until his death. The Suites are themselves prefaced by an elaborate fantasia, and they contain the standard sequence of dance numbers – allemandes, courantes, sarabandes and gigues.

Published two years later, the Anmuthige Clavier-Übung was probably written earlier, and functions as a small library of preludes, ricercares, fugues, fantasias, toccatas and a chaconne, which are not grouped together by key. Both collections make clear that Krieger deserves to rank with Fischer, Kuhnau and Pachelbel as one of the outstanding German keyboard composers of the generation before Bach.

Boccaccio has paid careful attention to the details of old fingering techniques; the resultant variety in phrasing and articulation gives new life to figurations that with a more modern legato approach can seem plain. As his own booklet note explains, he has also taken considered decisions about when discreet ornamentation can enhance the music's impact and when to let Sweelinck's notes

The Seville-born keyboard player Alejandro Casal has worked with many luminaries of the early-music world such as Gustav Leonhardt, Alan Curtis and Giuliano Carmignola. For his debut on Brilliant Classics he made the first recording of the complete ricercars, fugues and sonatas by Sebastián de Albero (95187). ‘Casal performs this sometimes odd music with a forceful and vibrant manner. He is often very direct in his use of the keyboards and strict rhythms, but he doesn’t miss a note of the often strange harmonies, allowing them to appear in just an abrupt a fashion as the composer intended… Casal brings to life Albero’s music in a new and vibrant manner.’ Fanfare magazine, November 2016.


Johann Krieger (1652-1735) was an important composer of the German keyboard school, and together with Buxtehude, Böhm, Muffat, Pachelbel, Kuhnau and Lübeck he paved the way for the great Johann Sebastian Bach.
Krieger was for most part of his life the organist of Zittau in Saxony. Two printed collections of his keyboard music survive: Sechs musicalische Partien (1697), containing six partitas for the harpsichord, and Anmuthige Clavier-Übung (1699), with nine preludes, five ricercares, seven fugues, a fantasy, two toccatas and a chaconne. Mattheson confirmed Johann Krieger’s reputation in Der Vollkommene Capellmeister (Hamburg, 1739): “This man merits being remembered at the forefront of the best and most thorough contrapunctists of the century”.
Alejandro Casal plays on a copy of a Christian Vater (1738) harpsichord. The organ pieces were recorded at Faro Cathedral (Portugal). The organ was built by Johann Heinrich Hulenkampf, disciple of famous Arp Schnitger, and was devised in the way of the North of Germany, around 1715-16. It was remodelled in 1767 by Pasquale Gaetano Oldovini, who enlarged it. Daniele Boccaccio is one of Italy’s foremost keyboard players. A scholar as well, he did extensive research into historic sources. He plays 3 different historic organs and a copy of a Flemish harpsichord.
Alejandro Casal already made an impressive recording of keyboard works by Sebastián de Albero for Brilliant Classics.

Track list

Disk 1

  1. Johann Krieger: Fantasia è partita I in C Major: I. Fantasia
  2. Johann Krieger: Fantasia è partita I in C Major: II. Allemande
  3. Johann Krieger: Fantasia è partita I in C Major: III. Corrente
  4. Johann Krieger: Fantasia è partita I in C Major: IV. Sarabanda
  5. Johann Krieger: Fantasia è partita I in C Major: V. Gique
  6. Johann Krieger: Menuet in G Major
  7. Johann Krieger: Bourée in G Major
  8. Johann Krieger: Gavotte in G Major
  9. Johann Krieger: Partita II in D Minor: I. Allemande
  10. Johann Krieger: Partita II in D Minor: II. Corrente
  11. Johann Krieger: Partita II in D Minor: III. Sarabanda. Ledóuble
  12. Johann Krieger: Partita II in D Minor: IV. Gique
  13. Johann Krieger: Partita III in F Major: I. Allemande
  14. Johann Krieger: Partita III in F Major: II. Corrente
  15. Johann Krieger: Partita III in F Major: III. Sarabanda. Le couble
  16. Johann Krieger: Partita III in F Major: IV. Gique
  17. Johann Krieger: Partita III in F Major: V. Menuet
  18. Johann Krieger: Partita IV in G Major: I. Allemande
  19. Johann Krieger: Partita IV in G Major: II. Corrente
  20. Johann Krieger: Partita IV in G Major: III. Sarabanda
  21. Johann Krieger: Partita IV in G Major: IV. Gique
  22. Johann Krieger: Partita IV in G Major: V. Menuet
  23. Johann Krieger: Partita V in A Major: I. Allemande
  24. Johann Krieger: Partita V in A Major: II. Corrente
  25. Johann Krieger: Partita V in A Major: III. Sarabanda. Le double
  26. Johann Krieger: Partita V in A Major: IV. Gique
  27. Johann Krieger: Partita VI in B Major: I. Allemande
  28. Johann Krieger: Partita VI in B Major: II. Corrente
  29. Johann Krieger: Partita VI in B Major: III. Sarabanda. Le double. Le double. Variatio. Variatio. Variatio
  30. Johann Krieger: Partita VI in B Major: IV. Gique
  31. Johann Krieger: Partita VI in B Major: V. Rondeau
  32. Johann Krieger: Menuet in A Minor
  33. Johann Krieger: Bourée in A Minor

Disk 2

  1. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: I. Praeludium in E Minor
  2. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: II. Ricercar in E Minor
  3. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: III. Ricercar in F Major
  4. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: IV. Praeludium in F Major
  5. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: V. Praeludium in G Major
  6. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: VI. Fuga in G Major
  7. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: VII. Ricercar in A Minor
  8. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: VIII. Ricercar in B Major
  9. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: IX. Praeludium in A Minor
  10. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: X. Praeludium in B Major
  11. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XI. Fuga. Thema I in C Major
  12. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XII. Fuga. Thema II in C Major
  13. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XIII. Fuga. Thema III in C Major
  14. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XIV. Fuga. Thema IV in C Major
  15. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XV. Fuga à 4. Themati in C Major
  16. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XVI. Praeludium in C Major
  17. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XVII. Ricercar in G Minor
  18. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XVIII. Praeludium in G Minor
  19. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XIX. Fuga in D Minor
  20. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XX. Fantasia in D Minor
  21. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XXI. Praeludium in A Major
  22. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XXII. Toccata in DMajor
  23. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XXIII. Praeludium in C Minor
  24. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XXIV. Giacona in G Minor
  25. Johann Krieger: Anmuthige Clavier-Übung: XXV. Toccata mit dem Pedal in C Major