96kHz/24-bit, FLAC; Alpha ALPHA252 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)

This is the Alpha label debut of Belgian tenor van Mechelen and his period instrument group A Nocte Temporis (flute, organ, cello), set up in 2016. He’s devised a thematically related sequence of eight arias from cantatas by Bach, interspersed with chorale preludes and movements from instrumental works to create a 70m ‘little concert for a Sunday afternoon’ [see the trailer here], which they are touring this year. Be warned: it’s all unremittingly serious stuff! The recording was made last May at the Sainte Aurélie Church, Strasbourg, where the organ is a restored 1718 Silbermann. The performers are each close-set (presumably because of the generous ambient setting). Texts are given but translations of the sung German are on different pages of the PDF. CB

Sound Quality: 80%

Hi-Fi News Lab Report

Tenor Reinoud Van Mechelen projects powerfully into his pair of mics, causing harmonics (from voice and downstream preamps/limiters) to carry into the full bandwidth of this 96kHz recording. Note (inaudible) spurious tone at 40kHz. PM