Author Topic: Recordings for lute and related instruments  (Read 70629 times)

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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #420 on: February 11, 2019, 04:54:12 AM »
though I haven’t heard Heringman yet.

Just heard it



And jolly nice it is too. Expressive, fluid and lyrical, without collapsing into some naive folksy song-book type style. The USP is that in addition to a lute he sometimes uses a cittern and a bandora, which are very characterful. The cittern seems to me to lack delicacy, the bandora is rather nice and quiet. There’s even a couple of songs with cittern and some sort of bowed bass instrument together. I’d appreciate suggestions for other recordings of bandora. Anyway, it’s not a bad thing to leave the beaten path and to listen to unexpected ways with familiar tunes.

Holborne is one of these cusp composers - renaissance simple balanced  lyricism, or baroque emotional convoluted expressiveness? That makes him interesting.
« Last Edit: February 11, 2019, 04:58:03 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #421 on: February 13, 2019, 10:20:17 AM »


This is extraordinary, I'm not sure I like it, I know lovers of guitar will like it, it is totally extraordinary. Actually no, it's so unexpected that it's impossible not to like respect   be glad that it exists. . I don't like it.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2019, 10:26:28 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #422 on: February 13, 2019, 11:01:15 PM »


This is not a bad Piccinini recital from Nigel North. It's very "Apollonian", you know, there's zero feeling of improvisation, spontaneity. He doesn't overstate the affects, which is probably right for Renaissance music like this. The beauty comes mainly from the balance, the level headedness of it. And the catchy tunes and the cool sounding instrument. Nigel North's style here makes me think of finely carved marble. Good sound, nice lute which is both quite  muscular and quite sweet at the same time, paradoxically maybe. It's always nice to hear a chittarrone too, though I maybe have heard ones with more personality, I'm not sure.

Listening to this again, I felt that my earlier comments are fair but one sided. That’s to say, Nigel North is indeed very level headed in the performances, but he is nontheless very inspired and communicative. There’s no sense of anything being telephoned in, his committment is palpable.

And what wonderful music! I can imagine a young Froberger hearing this and being inspired.

Great sound quality too, and a lovely lute too. This is perhaps Nigel North’s prime time, and Michel Bernstein’s too.

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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #423 on: February 18, 2019, 05:26:16 AM »


These recordings have a composer in common, the former was made in 1987 when it was released on Hyperion as an LP called La compagna, the latter was made in 1994 for Naxos. And maybe not surprisingly there are some quite basic differences. In the earlier recording the music making has a naive song book like quality which makes it instantly appealing -- it's one of those rare recordings which just exudes good will and well being and I find it hard to stop listening once I start - he remonds me of Tilney (in Elizabethan Songs and Dances.) The latter is more introverted (or is it the sound take which makes it sound more introverted), and seems to me to delight in the delicate, quiet, complex textures of the music, music like an intricate piece of lacework.The Naxos is more challenging, less catchy, more cerebral, but no less a pleasure and no less rewarding.

What both recordings do is show offf Christopher Wilson's strengths, in my opinion he has two strengths.  One is rhythm -- he knows how to make the music have a pulse without overstressing the strong beats -- in that way he reminds me of Hogwood at his best (in Byrd.) And second in touch, the variety of attacks and liasons is fabulous -- there he reminds me of Stembridge (in Frescobaldi)
« Last Edit: February 18, 2019, 07:06:50 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Florestan

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #424 on: February 18, 2019, 07:47:36 AM »
Listening to this again, I felt that my earlier comments are fair but one sided. That’s to say, Nigel North is indeed very level headed in the performances, but he is nontheless very inspired and communicative. There’s no sense of anything being telephoned in, his committment is palpable.

And what wonderful music! I can imagine a young Froberger hearing this and being inspired.

Great sound quality too, and a lovely lute too. This is perhaps Nigel North’s prime time, and Michel Bernstein’s too.

I'm quite fond of the performance below --- not that I've heard any other but the music is indeed wonderful.

“Beauty must appeal to the senses, must provide us with immediate enjoyment, must impress us or insinuate itself into us without any effort on our part." --- Claude Debussy

Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #425 on: February 18, 2019, 09:01:06 AM »
I'm quite fond of the performance below --- not that I've heard any other but the music is indeed wonderful.



yeah fabulous in Book 1 there, the chaconne type thing on a chitarrone on track 4 is amazing!
« Last Edit: February 18, 2019, 09:03:52 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #426 on: February 18, 2019, 09:03:24 AM »


Sensational delicate ornamentation in this Zamboni CD by Simone Vallerotonda
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #427 on: February 22, 2019, 06:56:50 AM »


A very satisfying of Dutch renaissance music by Anthony Bailes. One reason it succeeds is that the programme is art fully balanced between contemplative music and lively music, so that you never really grow tired of the style. Bailes also plays with good judgement about how much to of the instruments resonances to let us savour, so we can enjoy the sounds, smell the roses, without feeling that the performer is being self indulgent. The music itself is a joy, that goes without saying. The only coposer I knew before was Nicolas Vallet, so for me this recording is a voyage of discovery, with pride of place given to the thoroughly baroque Joachim van den Hove.
« Last Edit: February 22, 2019, 06:58:37 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #428 on: March 10, 2019, 12:06:46 AM »
Just heard it



And jolly nice it is too. Expressive, fluid and lyrical, without collapsing into some naive folksy song-book type style. The USP is that in addition to a lute he sometimes uses a cittern and a bandora, which are very characterful. The cittern seems to me to lack delicacy, the bandora is rather nice and quiet. There’s even a couple of songs with cittern and some sort of bowed bass instrument together. I’d appreciate suggestions for other recordings of bandora. Anyway, it’s not a bad thing to leave the beaten path and to listen to unexpected ways with familiar tunes.

Holborne is one of these cusp composers - renaissance simple balanced  lyricism, or baroque emotional convoluted expressiveness? That makes him interesting.

These comments do not do justice to these performances. Heringman here is like a paragdigm of certain type of performer whose art is about good taste and sobriety. He shuns ostentatious virtuosity and audacity; the pulse is never marked with forceful strong beats; the music is embellished so organically that you don’t notice.

To appreciate this sort of music making you have to be willing and able to enter into its classical spirit. For my part I love it, it’s one of those CDs I can’t stop listening to, and I’ve even once found myself playing it twice on the trot.  I intend to explore more of Heringman’s work.

« Last Edit: March 10, 2019, 12:19:57 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #429 on: March 10, 2019, 09:02:08 AM »


Matthäus Waissel is a new composer for me, my first impression is that the music is very attractive in its naivety. Valentin Bakfark is a composer I'm slightly familiar with, though only through Dániel Benkö's recordings, and, of course, listening to the two side by side, is interesting.

The same issues which arise in organ music arise in lute music. Do you play like a symphony orchestra, with the music's components distinguished by clearly different, maybe even contrasting, colours, tempos and articulations. Or do you play with subtly varying shades and nuances?

Heringman has chosen a lute where the strings' colours resemble each other. He does not mark the sections of the music with dramatic changes in articulation or tempo. The result is very coherent and repays attention. It isn't dramatic and it doesn't grab attention.

And as with the Holborne CD, the embellishment make the music plastic and organic. Organic plastic, what could be greener than that?! The overall feeling is sweet and introspective. 

I like it very much.
« Last Edit: March 10, 2019, 09:07:36 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #430 on: March 12, 2019, 12:56:41 AM »





This recording by Hopkinson Smith was . . .  in 1988 (Discogs again) and is dedicated to music by Ennemond Gaultier. . . .

There's a fluid lyricism, a sense of unpredictable rhythm, a variety of timbre and attack, a wide range of complex bitter-sweet emotions.

Very good experience returning to this recording while thinking of my favourite definition of the style

Quote from: Manfred F Bukofzer, Music in the Baroque Era
The quickly fading sound of the lute did not lend itself to polyphonic voice leading and called for specific techniques that compensated for the limitations of the instrument. The "broken style" of lute music, a most ingenious and consistent application of such a technique, may be called a glorification of the simplest lute figure: the arpeggio, That broken style is characterised by rapidly alternating notes in different registers that supply, in turn, melody and harmony. Seemingly distributed in arbitrary fashion in different registers, the notes produced, in their composite rhythm, a continuous strand of sound. The lute composer was able to articulate the even flow by means of double and triple stops which suggested the rhythmic patterns, essential to the dance. The texture of lute music was necessarily free voiced since no voice could be carried through and since notes that hinted at one voice at the beginning of the measure dropped out as soon as they had appeared.

What I saw this time round is the independence of the lower notes, the bass voice, in Hopkinson Smith's recording, like baroque basso continuo almost. I was also impressed by the way that Hopkinson Smith psychologises the music, like some people do with Chopin's nocturnes: we're presented with a music which is dark, deeply troubled. And indeed the accuracy of the technique especially in faster music, and the beauty of the one, the soft tone. I think of its style -- i.e. soft and lyrical rather than lively and articulated - then this is a real success.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 01:02:06 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #431 on: March 12, 2019, 03:52:48 AM »


Ferdinand Fischer (1656-1746) is a composer whose work was unknown until Hubert Hoffmann discovered their manuscripts in Abbey of Kremsmünster in Austria. He immediately and rightly recognised the high quality of the music. With the help of Gunar Letzbor, he persuaded Challenge Classics to allow him to make the recording, which he calls  a monument in sound both to the music and its creator.

Too soon to for me to comment on the music other than to say that my intuition is that its high quality and contrapuntal, the booklet cites Biber and Muffat as influences, though points out that Ferdinand Fischer was well known as a lutenist in his day, he would have been aware of the latest music, and he was his own man too -- an autodidact maybe.

It is brilliantly recorded.

Quote
. In one of the quietest
recording studios in all of Europe – the Galaxy studios in Mol, Belgium -
we finally brought the long since faded lute-poems of Pater Ferdinando
back to life. Through the wonderfully delicate sound of my lute, Bert’s
immeasurable sensitivity and the most advanced recording technology
that I have ever had the privilege of using, the lutenist-pater began
speaking to us once more.

I can't help but reflect on two things. First, how lively the area of baroque music is -- think of this, the Tellemann solo viol music, the Goettweig Partitas . . .

And second how wonderful steaming is, in how it lets the interested listener find the music, hear it, read the booklet.
« Last Edit: March 12, 2019, 04:11:10 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #432 on: March 14, 2019, 01:45:39 AM »


One of the most riveting anthologies of French lute music that I've heard, mainly because Claire Antonini projects a love and commitment to the music. Tons of rubato, but to me it all sounds quite natural. One highlight of the recording for me is the sequence of pieces by François Dufaut.

Just to echo this, which I've been revising with enormous pleasure. The sense of commitment is palpable. This may be the best French baroque lute recording for someone who wants to dip their toe in the water.

One problem. I have it through spotify -- can anyone find a CD or a lossless download for me. I've spoken to Claire Antonini and she can't help.

(A similar thing happened with Jinathan Dunford's second recording of Ste. Colombe (senior), he couldn't help either. There is a definite tension in the market between a trend to mp3 and a trend to High Res. )
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #433 on: March 16, 2019, 08:30:58 AM »
A bunch of pieces attributed to Ennemond Gaultier and other lutenists of the same period.  Easy listening. Good sound and nice performances.
But the timing is shamefully short ( a bit more 40' )   
Nevertheless a worthy addition to the CD library



I've been listening to a lot of Ennemond Gaultier over the past couple of weeks and this recording has grown on me more and more each time I revisit it. I think it's very well judged -- I mean the tempos feel right when you listen in an unencumbered frame of mind, and I like especially the way he gives the bass voice quite a bit of independence, we're in real polyphonic music here, not just a bass accompaniment! My feeling is that his approach in Vieux Gaultier is a sort of middle ground between the two extremes of Hopkinson Smith and Louis Pernot 

I haven't had a chance to get my head round the Charles Lespine and the Denis Gaultier  properly yet, it seems very nice though!

Jean Marie Poirier put together a little ensemble with vocalists and instrumentalists called Ensemble Wallsingham, my guess he did it specifically for BNL (which was an interesting label, very interesting.) Anyway they have this recording, which I've started to dip in to, without yet having the time to have a strong idea of what their approach is about.

« Last Edit: March 16, 2019, 08:36:46 AM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #434 on: March 18, 2019, 11:35:34 AM »
Alberto de Mantua is best known as Albert de Rippe, the Frenchified name he adopted when he was active  in the court of Francois 1er, bringing Italian music to the king who was a well known lover of all things Italian. He stood to Francois 1er as Lully stood to Louis XIV.

Despite his stature, as far as I know there are only two recordings which are dedicated to him, these

 

I find myself very much enjoying the one by Peter Söderberg, who has a gift for finding the logic in the fantasias: Peter Söderberg makes me think that although de Rippe may not be as interesting as his contemporary Francesco Milano, he is well worth exploring nevertheless. In a way I think what Söderberg has done with de Rippe's music is revealing because it shows that French music from the early C16 wasn't all naive, it had a sophisticated side.

I've yet to get my head around Hopkinson Smith's recording.
« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 02:06:04 PM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #435 on: March 19, 2019, 02:05:28 PM »



I've yet to get my head around Hopkinson Smith's recording.

I've got my head around it now and I see that I was wrong to think this



de Rippe may not be as interesting as his contemporary Francesco Milano,

Hopkinson Smith shows us a de Rippe whose music goes far beyond the spirit of the brasnle -- I mean the jaunty naive tuneful style that I associate with a show for tourists in a medieval festival in a market place in the south of France. Instead most of the music is full of subtle and organic changes in tempo and rhythm, rich in expressive variety  and interesting, far from straightforward polyphony, yielding surprising textures. He does all this without losing a sense of direction or of inevitable flow or coherence in the transitions. He's wonderful in the fantasias, which seem to be brimming over with inventive surprises. 

Two tangy instruments, a lute and a guitar, well recorded. This is one of those recordings which I can't stop listening to once I start. 

« Last Edit: March 19, 2019, 02:23:14 PM by Mandryka »
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #436 on: March 20, 2019, 10:23:49 PM »


A Dall'Aquila recording by Paul O’Dette with poor sound. It think the interpretations are excellent but spoilt by reverberation. Someone told me that an earthquake necessitates a last minute change of recording venue, and the this is the result.
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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #437 on: March 20, 2019, 10:31:27 PM »


A Dall'Aquila recording by Paul O’Dette with poor sound. It think the interpretations are excellent but spoilt by reverberation. Someone told me that an earthquake necessitates a last minute change of recording venue, and the this is the result.

Unfortunately you're right on the sound... Couldn't handle it.  ???

But I actually also wasn't wowed by the interpretations.

Q
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #438 on: March 20, 2019, 11:08:45 PM »
Unfortunately you're right on the sound... Couldn't handle it.  ???

But I actually also wasn't wowed by the interpretations.

Q

You may be right, you’ve probably given it more attention than I did, I was so disappointed by the sound!
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Offline Mandryka

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Re: Recordings for lute and related instruments
« Reply #439 on: March 23, 2019, 01:35:17 PM »
.

Luís Gasser plays fantasies by Lluís del Milà (Luys Milan)  These are the best performances of the untranscribed instrumental pieces I have ever heard. The poetry and gentleness and humility of what Gasser does is sensational - his approach leans towards the contemplative,  but in my opinion there's nothing contrived or baroque (in the pejorative sense) about his style.

A lot of the credit is due to the beauty of Gasser's vihuela, and the sound take. The ambience is never forceful or dramatic, always quiet and intimate. This is a contrast and a revelation compared to the feeling that Hopkinson Smith and the sound engineers for Astrée created with the same music. Evidently not all vihuelas are the same! I would also say that Gasser's approach is is less preoccupied about creating effects than Hopkinson Smith's, less stylised.

I just wonder if Lluís del Milà isn't a sort of peak, a summit of the Renaissance. There's something natural, peaceful, at ease with itself,  about his music. His art is touching, without the slightest hint of sentimentality. The music is directly  communicative without ever being naive.

Revisiting Luis Gasser’s recording this evening and once again I’m knocked out by what he does, despite or because of the sound, which sites the listener firmly in the audience (where I think he should be) rather than sitting on the lute (which is where I often seem to find myself.) If I’m not misremembering Gasser hasn’t ever recorded anything else, and he’s written a book on Lluis del Mila, a specialist then.

I still haven’t paid any attention to the singing on the CD, except to sense that Paul Hillier is on very good form.

(Since I last played this recording, I’ve removed my preamp from the chain, so the source goes directly into the power amp. This particular recording has improved tremendously. Preamps are evil things!)
« Last Edit: March 23, 2019, 01:56:06 PM by Mandryka »
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