Hyperion Records

Am Bach im Frühling, D361
First line:
Du brachst sie nun, die kalte Rinde
composer
published in 1829
author of text

Recordings
'Schubert: The Complete Songs' (CDS44201/40)
Schubert: The Complete Songs
Buy by post £150.00 CDS44201/40  40CDs Boxed set + book (at a special price)  
'Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 2 – Stephen Varcoe' (CDJ33002)
Schubert: The Hyperion Schubert Edition, Vol. 2 – Stephen Varcoe
Buy by post £10.50 CDJ33002 
'Schubert: An introduction to The Hyperion Schubert Edition' (HYP200)
Schubert: An introduction to The Hyperion Schubert Edition
HYP200  Super-budget price sampler — Deleted  
Details
Track 7 on CDJ33002 [4'15]
Track 24 on CDS44201/40 CD16 [4'15] 40CDs Boxed set + book (at a special price)
Track 26 on HYP200 [4'15] Super-budget price sampler — Deleted

Am Bach im Frühling, D361
This aria stems from the purest Schubertian inspiration, as natural and inevitable as the flowing of water and the blossoming of wild flowers beside the brook. This is all the more remarkable because the dilettante Schober's verses lack the originality and deep feeling of Mayrhofer's and veer dangerously towards sentimentality. The song's beautiful melody and seasonal radiance are initially in the major key, but like that other great spring song Im Frühling the smile in the music is heard through a gentle veil of tears - the vernal glories of nature only serve to emphasise the lover's pain. It is no doubt for this reason that Schubert conceived this 'blue' song for the bass voice. If it were transposed upwards it would be full of brighter sounds, but the low tessitura plays a large part in tugging at the heartstrings. A voice singing in this range has the quality of autumn in springtime, as if chastened by experience and suffering. A high vocal line energises a song, but here the mood is one of the deepest introspection and contemplation. How different this is from Auf dem Flusse in Winterreise where the stream's icy covering has not yet yielded to spring sunshine and the lover has not come to terms with his grief. The conventional triplet accompaniment for an italianate aria here also serves to suggest water, until at the phrase 'der Erde allgemeine Blute' words and music flower together - as if to create a herb to heal the lover's wounds. A measured recitative ends with arpeggiated chords in which the pianist's hands ripple through undergrowth in search of the solitary blue flower. This leads to a da capo in which it is up to the performers to demonstrate that in a song like this there is no such thing as mere repetition. In the slow movements of the late piano sonatas or the String Quintet the disquiet of the middle section lingers into the recapitulation; here only a change of vocal colour can suggest deepened awareness and introspection.

from notes by Graham Johnson © 1988

Track-specific metadata
Click track numbers opposite to select

Details for CDS44201/40 disc 16 track 24
Artists
ISRC
GB-AJY-88-00207
Duration
4'15
Recording date
18 October 1987
Recording venue
Seldon Hall, Haberdashers' Aske's School, Hertfordshire, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Mark Brown
Recording engineer
Antony Howell
Hyperion usage
  1. Schubert: The Complete Songs (CDS44201/40)
    Disc 16 Track 24
    Release date: October 2005
    40CDs Boxed set + book (at a special price)
  2. Schubert: An introduction to The Hyperion Schubert Edition (HYP200)
    Disc 1 Track 26
    Release date: January 1997
    Deletion date: December 2009
    Super-budget price sampler — Deleted
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