Vivaldi & Bach For Recorders / Quartetto Icarus, Release Date: 12/21/2010, Composer: Johann Sebastian Bach, Antonio Vivaldi, Orchestra/Ensemble: Icarus Quartet, Number of Discs: 1, All the pieces on this program are arrangements and transcriptions for recorder quartet-and in three cases, transcriptions of transcriptions-of concertos and other music by Vivaldi and Bach. The usual raison d'être in the case of these two composers is that they themselves transcribed their own and others' works and are, thus, fair game themselves, and that is the operative rationale here. There is a body of work explicitly for recorder ensembles, most of it written to help foster the revival of interest in the instrument from the middle years of the last century. There is also the considerable body of recent music written for the Amsterdam Loeki Stardust Quartet (still very much in business after 30 years). If the ensemble in question is a quartet of recorders, played by specialists in early music, however, the pickings are slim, indeed. The recording has good sound; it is recorded quite close up, however, so the listener is treated to occasional key-slaps and quick breaths. There are no musicological revelations here; the playing is fine and straightforward. There is little direct competition for this program, save for BWV 596 and the three contrapuncti, which the Loeki quartet has recorded for Channel Classics.