Live record from a concert in the "Resonanzen 1999" series, Wiener Konzerthaus 1999.
The Passion according to St John as recorded here is a rather simple work. The Passions written by Italian composers are in no way comparable to the Passions which were written in Germany. This was the direct result of the reforms of the Council of Trent (1545-1563) which ordered settings of the Passion story to be simple, using only the text of the Gospels without any free poetic addition. So this Passion isn't much different from the Passions written in the renaissance. It is also part of a tradition in Naples, performing the St John Passion on Good Friday. The best-known example is Alessandro Scarlatti's St John Passion, written about 100 years earlier.
"…clear diction and outstandingly responsive singing throughout is the biggest single asset of the performance. Superbly dynamic the set is obligatory for all committed Bachians." ~Fanfare
This CD is an album that falls into a niche category of productions. Those familiar with the band's history will recognize the main title of this album, as it is the same as their debut album from 1972. The subtitle, “The Complete Works”, indicates that this isn't merely a reissue, of course. It is not a reissue with added bonus tracks or in other manners issued in an extended version either. Instead, this is a remake of their first album. New recordings of their old album, extended with additional tracks, and when I compare the track list of this 2014 edition with the original album, it appears that the album has been rearranged fairly extensively too. Some compositions are shorter, other are longer, some appear to be missing altogether, at least as far as track titles go. It is, in short, a new album, a brand new version of their debut album from 1972.