Well, it’s the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, so it’s a certainty that this is absolutely an excellent recording, there’s no doubting that. This is their second Brandenburg set, having done a recording back in the late ‘90s, so the question of whether you need this or not is essentially down to minor details.

I was a little surprised that this new release joins those that do nothing with the “missing” slow movement of No 3. All that’s on the page is a bare two chords, and the implication is that Bach was rather expecting the players to improvise something. When this is improvised live (usually a role given to the harpsichordist), it’s always electrifying, so it’s a bit of a let-down that all we get is what’s on the page. Heck, even their previous recording included a harpsichord passage here. An odd step backwards.

The guest soloists are certainly no slouches; violinist Isabelle Faust’s solo turns in No 3 and No 4 are incredible,...