Crisp, foot-tapping rhythms; clear-cut tunes; and occasionally weird-sounding harmonic shifts are all terms that well describe the four works on Chandos' Johann Friedrich Fasch: Orchestral Music, featuring Philadelphia-based Baroque ensemble Tempesta di Mare, a group formerly known as the Philadelphia Baroque Orchestra. All three-and-a-third works presented here are identified as being "premiere recordings." Fasch has so many things in terms of concerti and orchestral suites alone that it is not hard to imagine these works are new to recordings.
The ensemble Mare Nostrum (dir. Andrea De Carlo) and Nora Tabbush (a worthy heir to Montserrat Figueras) here revive some pure treasures of Spanish music. Combining early instruments (viola da gamba, cornetto, etc.) with traditional ones, they bring out all the colours of these songs and dances that were to be heard in New Spain. New Spain, the Spanish viceroyalty (1535-1821), stretched from Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico and Utah (United States) to Costa Rica in Central America, with Mexico City as its capital.