And you know that I can't resist....
Bach: Four Concerti for Various Instruments Rating=$$$$
[Support the Artist: Orchestra of St. Luke's]
How I Got This CD: Got free in the mail; it was a come-on from the Musical Heritage Society trying to get people to join their "Classical CD-of-the-Month Club," sort of like Columbia House, only for classical music geeks.
Nice, simple, and cheerful. If you had to pick one of the three Bach CDs reviewed here? Pick this one. Not that you can find it. I think this one is out of print right now.
Sample Song Download: Concerto in C for Oboe & Violin, S.1066: III. Allegro
Bach for Breakfast Rating=$$$
[Support the Artist]
How I Got This CD: Freebie demo from my Bordersverse Daze.
I have a very simple philosophy: never turn down a free classical CD. This is how I got most of the classical music in my collection. Bach for Breakfast is one of those "pop classical music compilations" designed to introduce people to the wonders of classical music. This is a nice mix of Bach compositions that really do sound like they should be heard in the morning. I can picture someone doing yoga, tai chi, or stretching exercises to this. Baring that, definitely drinking coffee and reading the newspaper. Pretty cool for first thing in the morning in the cube. Again, perfect for someone like me; not so much someone who's serious about Bach.
Sample Song Download: Concerto #4 In A, BWV 1055 - Allegro Moderato
Bach: The Masterpiece Collection Rating=$$
How I Got This CD: Picked it up 15 years ago from Stop & Shop (a grocery store chain). They used to run these specials, see? "Buy $XX amount of groceries and get this coolish thing for $XX off." They'd have a series of these things (encyclopedias, dishes, CDs) and every week you got a card punched and your thing-y for cheap. This particular special was classical music.
A little on the bombastic side, but hey, every once in a while, you need a bombastic classical number to get you through the day. A very decent recording with excellent sound (even if I think it lacks a little soul). Good if your casual about your classical or if you want to introduce someone to Bach's body of work. A real classical nut will definitely put their nose up at this collection.
Some "classic horror music" from Bach. Wonder how he'd react if he knew this has literally become the stereotypical theme song for every classic Universal horror monster pic? Okay, maybe not literally. But it certainly is in my mind. Right now I'm imagining Lon Cheney Sr. playing the Phantom of the Opera on the (literally) silent silver screen.
Sample Song Download: Toccata & Fugue In D Minor, BWV 565
Read the index for previous thumbnail reviews.
None = Avoid at all cost. Worth cutting your ears off to avoid if someone threatens to play it for you. When faced with even the threat of its cellophane-wrapped presence, your best option is to RUN AWAY! RUN AWAY!
$= If you stumble across it for cheap in a used bin, it might, maybe, perhaps could be worth the buy, but only if you need a cheap coaster for your cold drinks or a cool-looking frisbee.
$$= You might want to give this CD/artist a try, but only if the sample track tickles your fancy. Don't bother buying this one new because the good tunes you'd get out of this one ain't worth that kind of money.
$$$ = Worth looking for on a casual basis and maybe even buying new, but no big rush.
$$$$ = Definitely worth having in the ol' CD collection and definitely worth buying new, but don't re-arrange your personal "must have" list to get your hands on it.
$$$$$ = Why haven't you bought this CD yet? Go. This is a "Want. Take. Have." situation because you so want this.