GMG Classical Music Forum

The Music Room => Great Recordings and Reviews => Topic started by: Mandryka on October 27, 2015, 01:42:21 AM

Title: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 27, 2015, 01:42:21 AM
I'll start this off with a list of composers whose music has attracted my attention -- I may have forgotten some, or there may be important composers I haven't explored -- let me know if you spot any.


Richard Allison (1560–1570 – c. 1610)
John Blitheman (c. 1525 – 1591)
John Bull (1562–1628)
William Byrd (c. 1540–1623)
John Dowland (1563–1626)
Giles Farnaby (c. 1563–1640)
Orlando Gibbons (1583–1625)
Tobias Hume (1579? – 1645)
Thomas Morley (c. 1558–1602)
Peter Philips (c. 1560–1628)
John Redford (c. 1500 - 1547)
Thomas Simpson (1582–c. 1628)
Nicholas Strogers (b? -c. 1575)
Thomas Tallis (c. 1505 –  1585)
Thomas Tomkins (1572–1656)
Christopher Tye (c. 1505–before 1573)
John Blow (1649–1708)
John Jenkins (1592–1678)
William Corkine (fils) (fl.1610 - 1617)
William Lawes (1602–1645)
Matthew Locke (1621–1677)
Daniel Purcell (c. 1664 – 1717)[
Henry Purcell (1659–1695)
Christopher Simpson (c. 1602/1606–1669)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 27, 2015, 10:15:59 PM
Evidently the composer omitted from the list above is Anonymous.

In keyboard music Anonymous's music is preserved, as far as I can tell, in several manuscripts, the ones I've had the chance to explore on record so far are:

The Dublin Manuscript
Clement Matchett's Virginal Book
The Mulliner Book
The Fitzwilliam Virginal Book


Please let me know if you know about other early keyboard manuscripts with a discography. And I know nothing, or next to nothing, about collections of anonymous music for strings or other instruments.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 27, 2015, 10:36:17 PM
One of these manuscripts, the Matchett, is worth dealing with straight away because there's a recording which is special IMO. It was made by an amateur musician, Kenneth McAlpine, using a fine old English harpsichord (Kirkman 1776) I think you can hear McAlpine's love for and commitment to the music very clearly: it is a charismatic recording.


(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51X6DGBMFSL.jpg)


At least I think it's using the Kirkman 1776. McAlpine is a computer scientist who specialises in the digitisation of harpsichord sound, so maybe it's a hoax  ;)


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 28, 2015, 10:51:12 AM
As far as I can see, the only person to have recorded substantial collections of the Mulliner manuscript is Joseph Payne (for Naxos) though of course some pieces in it are well known and often performed. In  Volume 2 he uses three outstanding American organs, and I think the CD is a pure delight musically. Even if you're not interested in the music, and you're not a Payne fan, this CD is worth hearing for the organs. (United Church, Stonington, Conn.; St. Paul's Church, Brookline, Mass.; Church of the Epiphany, Worcester.)

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51yPXeqFLBL.jpg)

In it, the most substantial piece is very well appreciated, Bull's 9th In Nomine. There are performances from every man and his dog, including some power dogs like Hantaï and Asperen. Payne gives a bold performance because he takes it quite slowly, but to me it's a great success, revealing an inner life and nobility to the music, as well as a great sense of breaking free from the form at the end. I can't think of a better organ performance off hand, Rampe takes it too fast IMO and the result is glib. And organ is where it sounds best I think. Payne also recorded it on harpsichord for BIS.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: kishnevi on October 28, 2015, 06:33:08 PM
No input on manuscript collections, but you did miss Tallis.  He wrote about a CD's worth of keyboard music.  I have it in the Chappelle du Roi set on Brilliant, and a single CD which I can not find at the moment on Amazon, and for which I can't tell you the performer at the moment.  The music, or at least the performances, did not strike me as important. It includes both organ and harpsichord/virginal works.

Switching composers and performance styles, I do like this
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71SBNoiFkbL._SX522_.jpg)
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/71Tt5ruc3yL._SX522_.jpg)

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 28, 2015, 11:51:09 PM
How could I have forgotten Tallis! The musician on your CD is Rachelle Taylor, she plays two organs (Wetheringsett and Wingfield) which were reconstructed by the Royal College of Organists from 16th century fragments. And two harpsichords, both 16th century English.

Some of those Tallis pieces are pretty impressive studies in rhythm, the ones called Felix Namque. Both around 10 minutes, longer in fact. We're talking a generation or two before Byrd. I like this very early instrumental music a lot - Christopher Tye is a great favourite of mine too.

(http://www.grooves-inc.com/images/cover/924/234/nw1q73v0.jpg)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 29, 2015, 08:36:06 AM
As far as I know Timothy Roberts's recording of music by John Blow is the only one with substantial amounts of his instrumental music. Nevertheless Blow is well served on record because, not to mince words, this is a great recording.


(http://www.sfzmusic.co.uk/Resources/timscdcover2.jpeg)

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 02, 2015, 11:17:59 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51gU%2BVXl-nL.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51wk8ZwJSeL._SX466_.jpg)   (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51A%2Bt1qrTVL.jpg)


Thomas Tomkins Offertory is a big study in rhythm and imitation, I have three performances:

Hadrien Jourdan on the British built (Dallam) 17th century organ at Lanvellec. The performance is almost symphonic in the sense recommended as authentic by Stef Tuinstra in his notes on Georg Boehm: Jourdan ain't shy of using all the colourful stops at his disposal. The performance also reflects his view in the booklet that all but the last pieces by Tomkins are extravagant and impulsive.

Bernhard Klapprott on the 17th century meantone tuned organ at Uttum. The organ sounds old but more faceless than Jourdan's and the performance is more sober. 

Bertrand Cuiller on a modern copy of a Dutch style 16th century harpsichord, he turns it into a real virtuoso keyboard piece, exciting from the point of view of keyboard fireworks, fast and furious. .

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 03, 2015, 08:38:55 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/61Kdc9DBz3L._SX355_.jpg)

What is the essence of Englishness?

I dunno, but part of it is to do with rumbustious humour, a delight in playing with the established norms of good taste,  a relish of the unexpected, a phlegmatic temperament and a native understanding of elegance and style.

This record of consort music by Thomas Morley played by La Caccia shows his music is as English as tuppence. La Caccia find an enormous range and depth of feeling. The ensemble is impeccable, the tone is beautiful.

One plus point for me is that the music is too early to be Corelli-esque.

The only reservation is to do with the solo virginal pieces, there aren't many of them but Guy Penson seemed slightly to cautious.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 04, 2015, 10:00:02 AM
(http://a5.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Music/v4/87/c5/34/87c5348c-c80b-56c4-5e1f-8cf74dce7926/cover170x170.jpeg)

Lena Jacobson plays some music from Elizabeth Rogers' Virginal Book and by Martin Peerson, on the Compenius organ at Frederiksborg. Short choppy speech like articulation, dramatic and often astringent registrations and unexpected registration changes, lots of agogic hesitations. Intrusive mechanical action. The stream has some distortion. I think it's absolutely wonderful, I've just ordered the CD to get the booklet essay. What I'm hoping is that she supports her way of playing historically - though even if it's just a quirky romantic aberration it's still a fascinating thing to hear.

Que should not buy this recording.

The organ is clearly special, are there any other solo recordings of it? (I have Michelsen's chamber music recording and I've heard Koopman play it on YouTube)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on November 04, 2015, 10:24:30 AM

Que should not buy this recording.


Thanks for the warning... :D

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on November 04, 2015, 01:34:20 PM
The organ is clearly special, are there any other solo recordings of it? (I have Michelsen's chamber music recording and I've heard Koopman play it on YouTube)

These (I think you know most of them):

https://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Michael-Praetorius-1571-1621-Orgelwerke-Auch-auff-Orgeln/hnum/3076831

https://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/D%E4nische-Orgelmusik/hnum/7742201

http://www.amazon.de/Orgel-Frederiksborg-Sonderborg-Bolliger-Albert/dp/B000IJ7GQO/ref=sr_1_39?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1446672659&sr=1-39&keywords=albert+bolliger    (only half of it recorded on the Compenius organ)

parts of this: http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Philips/4684172

vol.1 of this: http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Classico/CLASSCD528

Francis Chapelet (Harmonia Mundi), Helmut Tramnitz (Archive), Finn Viderø (HMV) and Per Kynne Frandsen (Danish Fona) recorded an LP each on this organ, they are since long OOP.

From the top of my head I can not think of others.

Yes, Lena Jacobson´s CD is unusual, maybe too unusual for Que. :)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on November 04, 2015, 01:35:53 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51gU%2BVXl-nL.jpg)

Thomas Tomkins Offertory is a big study in rhythm and imitation, I have three performances:

Hadrien Jourdan on the British built (Dallam) 17th century organ at Lanvellec. The performance is almost symphonic in the sense recommended as authentic by Stef Tuinstra in his notes on Georg Boehm: Jourdan ain't shy of using all the colourful stops at his disposal. The performance also reflects his view in the booklet that all but the last pieces by Tomkins are extravagant and impulsive.

Thanks for the tip, ordered at once.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on November 04, 2015, 01:42:49 PM

In it, the most substantial piece is very well appreciated, Bull's 9th In Nomine. ... Payne gives a bold performance because he takes it quite slowly, but to me it's a great success, revealing an inner life and nobility to the music, as well as a great sense of breaking free from the form at the end. I can't think of a better organ performance off hand,  Payne also recorded it on harpsichord for BIS.

Yes, and Payne also recorded the In Nomine no. IX on organ for Vox in a late 1960es 3 LP Fitzwilliam Virginal Book excerpts Box, his recording debut I think. IMO it is even more noble than the Naxos recording.

http://www.amazon.de/Fitzwilliam-Virginal-Book-Joseph-Payne/dp/B000009JZP/ref=sr_1_27?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1446673207&sr=1-27&keywords=joseph+payne
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 05, 2015, 01:33:49 PM
These (I think you know most of them):

https://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/Michael-Praetorius-1571-1621-Orgelwerke-Auch-auff-Orgeln/hnum/3076831

https://www.jpc.de/jpcng/classic/detail/-/art/D%E4nische-Orgelmusik/hnum/7742201

http://www.amazon.de/Orgel-Frederiksborg-Sonderborg-Bolliger-Albert/dp/B000IJ7GQO/ref=sr_1_39?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1446672659&sr=1-39&keywords=albert+bolliger    (only half of it recorded on the Compenius organ)

parts of this: http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Philips/4684172

vol.1 of this: http://www.prestoclassical.co.uk/r/Classico/CLASSCD528

Francis Chapelet (Harmonia Mundi), Helmut Tramnitz (Archive), Finn Viderø (HMV) and Per Kynne Frandsen (Danish Fona) recorded an LP each on this organ, they are since long OOP.

From the top of my head I can not think of others.

Yes, Lena Jacobson´s CD is unusual, maybe too unusual for Que. :)

Thanks for this. I have heard some of them. I didn't realise that Koopman used it for Sweelinck, I don't have the booklet (that's a real limitation of streams.)

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 05, 2015, 01:45:14 PM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0003/696/MI0003696691.jpg)

Bjarte Eike and Barokksolistene play music by Anthony Holborne and others. Just an informal reaction - I think this is pretty special. I've been really impressed recently by what a difference meantone tuning can make in organ music, and I've been looking for a viol consort which have that "sour cream" sound. Barokksolistene just may be the job. The sounds they make in Holborne's Image of Melancholy, and in his Last Will and Testament are extraordinary. Much more like real voix égales playing than Savall.



Anyway this is a consort to follow I think.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 06, 2015, 09:09:47 AM
(http://www.glossamusic.com/glossa/files/References/311/GCD_P31102_cover_HD.jpg)   (http://www.attaccaproductions.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/1996.82-83..jpg)

This is a CD called Passion of Reason by a scratch group called Sour Cream. There are a couple of recorder players, a viol and (rarely) a lute type thing.

This cd contains several outstanding pieces by composers who were completely unknown to me. Close to the top of the list has to be the Ground on la mi re by Thomas Preston, which is unbelievably atmospheric, it's apparently his only surviving piece. But by no means in second place is a little sequence of three numbers by William Cornish. Cornish's fa la sol is quite substantial and involves some extended and imaginative imitative counterpoint. I'm beginning to see how so many of the best of these early contrapuntal fantasias are really explorations of rhythm, rhythm changes. His second of his  pieces called Catholicon is, here at least, both rhythmically and harmonically interesting.


Nathaniel Giles Salvador Mundi is possibly the most astonishing study in rhythm here, a wonderful sense of climax. Presumably it's a transcription. 

Chistopher Tye's masterpiece Sit Fast, which I'd only known as a work for viol consort, is given a splendid treatment on  recorders, every bit the equal of Fretwork and Spirit of Gambo, much better than Savall.

But the high point is an enormous set of four pieces which have their origins in something called The Baldwin Manuscript, I don't know how old the music is, they're all tagged as Kyrie on the stream, and they are totally disorienting in that familiar early music way. This doesn't sound like mass transcriptions  to me, but it does sound like music to come to terms with, as it were. Once again I'm missing the booklet.

There's a lot of other music on the recording, but not British.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on November 23, 2015, 09:42:31 AM
Thomas Tallys : one of Englands's greatest composers died #OnThisDay in 1585 (https://musicakaleidoscope.wordpress.com/2015/11/23/thomas-tallys-one-of-englandss-greatest-composers-died-onthisday-in-1585/)

(https://musicakaleidoscope.files.wordpress.com/2015/11/tallis1.jpg?w=764)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 20, 2016, 11:19:59 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51zmxboG-BL._SL500_AA280_.jpg)

The striking thing about this CD is that it is uncompromisingly oneric.

For Egarr, Gibbons is a romantic before his time, and the music is an exploration of the most profound and mysterious states of soul.

This way of playing Gibbons is not new, Gould and Pienaar played the music a bit like that on modern piano. But I think it is true that Egarr is the first to play Gibbons romantically on an old instrument. The other harpsichordist often fall into the error of treating his music as sterile and metronomic Elizabethan virtuoso fodder.

Egarr is helped in this respect by a poetic virginal. And he is helped by a fabulous technique - like no other active harpsichord player I can I can think of, Egarr can vary attack and touch.

An early recording in Egarr's career I think (it's a Globe CD), but it's one which seems to me to be more in the spirit of his Louis Couperin than his Froberger. See what you think.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on January 20, 2016, 11:27:27 PM
I find Richard Egarr's style generally erratic.

I never know what to expect from him, except that it is going to be different and that it will probably sound off stylistically....and plainly odd.
Gave up on him years ago...so there might be repertoire where he gets it just right.  8)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 20, 2016, 11:38:47 PM
I find Richard Egarr's style generally erratic.

I never know what to expect from him, except that it is going to be different and that it will probably sound off stylistically....and plainly odd.
Gave up on him years ago...so there might be repertoire where he gets it just right.  8)

Q

I wish I had your knack of telling what is off and on stylistically.

I think there are two Egarr styles: the style he used for Froberger, and the rest. But maybe I'm wrong.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on January 20, 2016, 11:44:59 PM
I wish I had your knack of telling what is off and on stylistically.

You don't seem to have any difficulty in determining what you like and not. :)

To me Egarr seems an acquired taste, but I know that plenty of his recordings are valued by some of our most esteemed fellow forum members.

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Jo498 on January 21, 2016, 12:15:48 AM
I have the Egarr/Gibbons CD and will re-listen (not too familiar with the music, though). My only other Egarr recordings are Handel's op.3 and op.4 and they are very good in their way but tend towards bland/middle of the road. The only erratic things here is that Egarr messes with one concerto (the one that also exists for harp) by leaving out the recorder parts (or something like that) and maybe some ornamentation. [From what we now know from musical clocks and also an annotated copy of Handel's 1720 suites it seems that ornamentation could hardly be too excessive at the time, so Egarr is probably on the right track...]
The concerti grossi op.3 are completely inoffensive, as far as I remember.

One of my favorite "Elizabethan" disc is a Recital by Pinnock from the 70s that also has a very beautiful sounding virginal (unfortunately only in a few pieces, most are played on a in my ears less distinctive sounding instrument, and it's short, LP length with less than 50 min)



Probably my first encounter with music of that time was the following disc almost 20 years ago. This is a lot of fun, probably not serious enough for Mandryka... ;) The Baltimore Consort has many more discs (I have about 4 or so) but most have more vocal pieces (this one has only about 3, most are instrumental).

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 21, 2016, 12:36:32 AM
You don't seem to have any difficulty in determining what you like and not. :)



Q

Yes I do!
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on January 21, 2016, 03:43:45 AM

The striking thing about this CD is that it is uncompromisingly oneric.

For Egarr, Gibbons is a romantic before his time, and the music is an exploration of the most profound and mysterious states of soul.

Egarr is helped in this respect by a poetic virginal. And he is helped by a fabulous technique - like no other active harpsichord player I can I can think of, Egarr can vary attack and touch.

An early recording in Egarr's career I think (it's a Globe CD), but it's one which seems to me to be more in the spirit of his Louis Couperin than his Froberger. See what you think.

On your recommendation I acquired this Egarr-CD and Laurence Stewart´s Gibbons/Byrd-CD some months ago, and I was very taken by Egarr's intimate, expressive (oneiric may be a bit overstated IMO) almost vocal style - a strong contrast to Stewart's straightforward instrumental, effective approach. These two CDs complement each other in a most telling way.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 21, 2016, 09:28:04 AM
oneiric may be a bit overstated IMO

I was maybe feeling a little sleepy.

I wonder if you have heard Egarr's Frescobaldi CD also on Globe. I've just started to listen to it and it seems to have some of the same qualities as his Gibbons.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on January 21, 2016, 02:06:17 PM
I wonder if you have heard Egarr's Frescobaldi CD also on Globe. I've just started to listen to it and it seems to have some of the same qualities as his Gibbons.

Yes, and I much agree. A very touching style, not like anything else.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 22, 2016, 01:37:32 PM
A very touching style, not like anything else.

He makes the music relatively linear and seamless, as if he wants to suppress sharp changes. It's like the extreme polar opposite of Vartolo.

The central part of the Cento Partite is really very touching.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 30, 2016, 07:10:58 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51IQAr4qgyL._AC_UL160_SR160,160_.jpg)

Pieter-Jan Belder plays a large selection of music by Giles Farnaby, being the latest instalment of his Fitzwilliam Book series, released last week. Half dedicated to Farnaby, the other half to Bull. This is just my initial impression.

It's a bit heavy, a bit clunky even, a bit samey in terms of texture, a bit  too much like he's decided on a pulse and he's sticking to it. In short, this is reductive: Farnaby reduced to virtuoso music for harpsichordists rather than soulful poetry for dreamers.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on January 30, 2016, 09:38:36 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51IQAr4qgyL._AC_UL160_SR160,160_.jpg)

Pieter-Jan Belder plays a large selection of music by Giles Farnaby, being the latest instalment of his Fitzwilliam Book series, released last week. Half dedicated to Farnaby, the other half to Bull. This is just my initial impression.

It's a bit heavy, a bit clunky even, a bit samey in terms of texture, a bit  too much like he's decided on a pulse and he's sticking to it. In short, this is reductive: Farnaby reduced to virtuoso music for harpsichordists rather than soulful poetry for dreamers.

Hey!  :) We converge in our impression of Belder's style in English repertoire.  What??  ??? :D

Anyway, a reminder of a great Farnaby disc I picked as one of my favourites of 2015, I doubt if you would regret it.. 8)


http://www.early-music.com/music/farnabys-dreame/

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on January 30, 2016, 12:15:51 PM
I think Belder is very fine in Byrd and Bull. His no-nonsense style is better suited to these composers.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 30, 2016, 01:44:20 PM
I've heard from several people that Timothy Roberts' Farnaby CD is good. It's obtainable from the harpsichord factor Malcolm Rose in Lewes, who made the instrument he uses. I'll phone them on Monday and get a copy.

As far as Belder goes, the thing I really like is vol 3, the Peter Philips. The playing is really lyrical. I should say I haven't heard the Bull in vol. 4 yet.

(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51iZy0Ga0gL._SL500_AA280_.jpg)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 31, 2016, 12:19:59 AM
Brace yourself for some big claims, probably incorrect, proposed for refutation.

Peter Philips, mate of Sweelinck and of Frescobaldi, was a composer on the cusp of a major style revolution. It's not clear whether his music is best seen as stile antico, that's to say played  voix égales to reveal complex counterpoint. Or whether it's best done madrigal style, picking on one voice to act as main melody, to be  supported by a sort of basso continuo.

Belder is in the stile moderno, madrigalesque school I think. Anneke Uittnbosch and maybe Siegbert Rampe are more like stile antico.

The interesting case is Elizabeth Farr. What distinguishes her style in Philips (and even more so in Byrd) is the arpeggiation. Basically, she plays British music like it's French, with broken chords buzzing around, which serve to mark out a pulse.

(Now get ready for the bit I'm not sure of) The result is something which is a sort of half way house between voix égales and basso continuo. The prominence of a simple melody remains: it doesn't sound like a motet for keyboard.

But the textures are rich and strange and complex. It's not like a nice hummable tune and a foot tapping rhythm.

I think Egarr plays Purcell and Handel in a halfway house way too - but that's another story.




Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on January 31, 2016, 04:28:58 AM
Brace yourself for some big claims, probably incorrect, proposed for refutation.

Peter Philips, mate of Sweelinck and of Frescobaldi, was a composer on the cusp of a major style revolution. It's not clear whether his music is best seen as stile antico, that's to say played  voix égales to reveal complex counterpoint. Or whether it's best done madrigal style, picking on one voice to act as main melody, to be  supported by a sort of basso continuo.

Belder is in the stile moderno, madrigalesque school I think. Anneke Uittnbosch and maybe Siegbert Rampe are more like stile antico.

The interesting case is Elizabeth Farr. What distinguishes her style in Philips (and even more so in Byrd) is the arpeggiation. Basically, she plays British music like it's French, with broken chords buzzing around, which serve to mark out a pulse.

(Now get ready for the bit I'm not sure of) The result is something which is a sort of half way house between voix égales and basso continuo. The prominence of a simple melody remains: it doesn't sound like a motet for keyboard.


Arpeggiation is not necessarily a "basso continuo" element. Well, if you just roll the chord upwards in an egal way, it is much like a basso continuo chord. But if you do it more differentiated, you may be able to highlight the individual parts in the chord and clarify the polyphony. Leonhardt's desynchronized chords fall into that category. I would say, that this is the way most informed harpsichordists use the arpeggio in polyphonic harpsichord music, and most renaissance and baroque harpsichord music is polyphonic music, style antico or not. The plain basso continuo effekt is more seldom sought, except when it is obvious, e.g. the first chord in Bach's Italian Concerto. The broken chords in French music (style brisé) serve IMO first and foremost to clarify the polyphony and not so much to point out the rhythm, and accordingly wide variations of rubato, which "disturbs" the rhythm also may be used for this style.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 05, 2016, 11:38:16 AM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0003/992/MI0003992443.jpg)

The way Tilney plays the enormous partita called The Second Ground is both courageous and extraordinary. He completely eschews any attempt to draw the listener in by means of drama or rhetoric. Instead it's like a flânerie in music, a long and pointless shaggy dog story. Whether the music, and the performer, can bear such an austere, modest, self effacing treatment is something I leave as a question without an answer: I have certainly enjoyed it more with repeated listening, but it certainly confounds expectations.

At first I thought that Asperen's Swellinck Fantasias on NM were close to the Tilney style here, but Asperen's more dramatic. Maybe Egarr playing Froberger's capricci and toccatas is closer.

Anyway we have something unique in this new Byrd CD, and something quite challenging.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: kishnevi on February 05, 2016, 11:47:47 AM
(http://www.musicandarts.com/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/0/1/017685128820_frontcover_physical.jpg)

The way Tilney plays the enormous partita called The Second Ground is both courageous and extraordinary. He completely eschews any attempt to draw the listener in by means of drama or rhetoric. Instead it's like a flânerie in music, a long and pointless shaggy dog story. Whether the music, and the performer, can bear such an austere, modest, self effacing treatment is something I leave as a question without an answer: I have certainly enjoyed it more with repeated listening, but it certainly confounds expectations.

At first I thought that Asperen's Swellinck Fantasias on NM were close to the Tilney style here, but Asperen's more dramatic. Maybe Egarr playing Froberger's capricci and toccatas is closer.

Anyway we have something unique in this new Byrd CD, and something quite challenging.

Thank you, I just ordered it.
For benefit of others, ASIN number is B018UPNBMA.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 06, 2016, 02:00:28 PM
(http://a3.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Music/v4/0a/30/df/0a30df76-4360-a81b-307a-f6964ce304e3/cover170x170.jpeg)

Other people tell me things about Lawes which quite frankly, I don't hear. They tell me that his music is bold and rumbustious and unpredictable and imaginative and emotionally complex. But mostly I hear just wonderfully constructed genteel Italianate galant light entertainment.

Then I discovered this antique recording from the Elizabethan Consort with Thurston Dart. Although the nature of the music is unchanged, these performances  so exude a love of the music and a total at-ease-ness with the idiom, it really would be churlish to do anything other than lie back and wallow in the beauty of it all. The beauty and the life - they make it come alive.
 
I knew Thurston Dart in solo music by Froberger and Bach, performances which are a bit of a let down to me because I think he tends to take things too fast all the time. But here in ensemble he's restrained by the others I guess, and the result is fabulous.

The label, Argo, issued some really rare recordings by Kenneth Gilbert a couple of years ago - recordings which had never been on CD. His first Purcell, and his D'Anglebert and Chambonnières. But the downloads lasted for a very short time and are now like hen's teeth. This is one to snap up.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 07, 2016, 03:01:51 AM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0002/850/MI0002850745.jpg)


John Ward (1590–1638);  William Lawes (April 1602 – 24 September 1645)

Not much in it by the birth and death dates, but a world of difference in their consort music for largish ensembles. (Lawes's music for solo viol and two viols seems a different kettle of fish - different genre almost.)

My feeling is that John Ward is much less influenced by the galant idea of simple emotional sunniness, and a lyrical soloist padded out by the other instruments,  an idea which may well  come from Corelli and which, IMO, heralded  a sort of dumbing down of music all over Europe.

Ward sounds much more like earlier music, with more interesting inner voices, more varied affects, more striking dissonances, more surprising twists and turns, less extrovert virtuoso stuff, more meditation. I couldn't help but think of chamber music by Scheidemann, Scheidt, Buxtehude and Frescobaldi.

Phantasm seem well up to the task in this recording, it's a good thing they've taken Ward under their wing because, as far as I can see, everyone else ignores him. Both in concert and on record I've sometimes been disturbed by the sort of balance Phantasm favours, which seems to me to give prominence to the higher voices. But here it seems less worrying for some reason.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 09, 2016, 01:54:49 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41R911MQ7JL.jpg)

I find these consorts by Matthew Locke more inventive and surprising on the whole than Lawes's and even Ward's.  Ensemble de Violes Orlando Gibbons is impeccable - refined and focused, serious. Maybe you could criticise them for obliterating any quintessentially English buffoonery and grotesqueness from the music, but you can't have it all ways at once.  Lovely CD of lovely music. Surprisingly the music is later than Lawes, but seems quite interesting in all the voices - certainly there are unexpected harmonies and changes of direction - but always in the best possible taste, as Cupid Stunt would have said.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on February 10, 2016, 11:13:52 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41R911MQ7JL.jpg)

I find these consorts by Matthew Locke more inventive and surprising on the whole than Lawes's and even Ward's.  Ensemble de Violes Orlando Gibbons is impeccable - refined and focused, serious. Maybe you could criticise them for obliterating any quintessentially English buffoonery and grotesqueness from the music, but you can't have it all ways at once.  Lovely CD of lovely music. Surprisingly the music is later than Lawes, but seems quite interesting in all the voices - certainly there are unexpected harmonies and changes of direction - but always in the best possible taste, as Cupid Stunt would have said.

I'm confused - didn't you just start a viols thread?  ::)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 10, 2016, 11:20:21 AM
I'm confused - didn't you just start a viols thread?  ::)

Q

Well I thought I'd put the English blokes here and the foreigners over there. But please yourself.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on February 10, 2016, 11:23:54 AM
Well I thought I'd put the English blokes here and the foreigners over there. But please yourself.

Thank you, I will...  8)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 11, 2016, 10:16:13 AM
Thank you, I just ordered it.
For benefit of others, ASIN number is B018UPNBMA.

This has impressed me more and more with repeated listening.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 11, 2016, 11:04:03 AM
(https://img.discogs.com/lKsUskEmHmns8SbynlHya_5_iHw=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-8221274-1458496820-5007.jpeg.jpg)

I would not be surprised to learn that Egarr had been influenced by this recording by Savall, because they both seem to take a similar approach: lyrical and poetic rather than dancing and rhetorical.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 24, 2016, 01:37:19 PM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/818BFR8e16L._SX355_.jpg)

This music by Tobias Hume for solo Lyra Viol often dances, often sings - but the songs aren't for the throat, and the dances aren't for the feet. They're for the soul. Maybe that's a consequence of Susanne Heinrich's extraordinary ability to create dreams out of sounds.

You know, this music is really timeless - it could be 17th century or 21st century. It is both austere and beautiful. It made me think of  John Cage's "The Harmony of Maine"

There's one place where Susanne Heinrich makes a major error of judgement. In the booklet she says that this music isn't capable of sustaining a concert - best sampled in small doses in the living room. Not true! It would make an excellent lunchtime concert. The variety of mood and viol effects is astonishing. 
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Musics
Post by: Mandryka on February 25, 2016, 01:19:31 PM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/093/MI0001093433.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)  (http://i.prs.to/t_200/884385734541.jpg)


Two recordings of solo lyra viol music by Tobias Hume, played by Jordi Savall. The former appeared in 2004, the latter more than 20 years before. Apart from a couple of numbers they contain the same music. Interpretively they are very different.

Savall the viola player in 2004 has qualities which I've learned to associate more with Paolo Pandolfo - beautiful phrasing always  played lightly, the pieces  sound as though they've been blown in on the wind; delicate in a way which seems not quite to belong to this world. He's helped by a very special sounding instrument, a bass viol by Barak Norman 1697.

The earlier recording is  the viol analogue of James McCracken singing Vesti la Giubba - Jordi finds big tunes and belts them out with great physicality and not much nuance or delicatesse, and that can be a very diverting experience when you're in the mood.

Savall 2004 lacks the extraordinary depth of fantasy of Susanne Heinrich, the sense of making dreams. In a way that makes what he does easier to listen to because it's less disturbing, less psychologically intense.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 28, 2016, 09:12:25 AM
(http://cdn.naxos.com/SharedFiles/images/cds/BIS-CD-539.gif)

Joseph Payne plays some Bull, Byrd and Gibbons, with a little Farnaby, Dowland and Tisdale. A CD called The Queenes Command.

I have to say I think this is a sensational recording. I first came across it when I was listening to different performances of Bull's In Nomine 9 and I was bowled over. Then I came across it again when listening to performances of Farnaby's Woody Cock Variations, and it seemed so much more inspired than all the others. Now I've heard the whole thing, and I think it's all bloody marvellous.

The style is inspired like stylus phantasticus almost, it's as if Payne is on an improvisational inspirational roll. He uses  strong clear harpsichords and virginal. As in Hans Davidsson's Buxtehude, I think we have a case of a performer really being inspired by the task of making sense of the music on his chosen instruments. There's nothing generic about these performances.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 01, 2016, 10:16:52 PM
(http://www.mymusicbase.ru/converts6/CD_6235.JPG)

The lovely CD by Jordi Savall, which is devoted to solo music for Lyra Viol, is dedicated mostly to William Cockrine and Alfonso Ferrabosco ( fils). The Lyra Viol is made for playing chordal music, contrapuntal music, and both composers make ample use of that capacity. The music of both composers is lyrical and austere at the same time. Savall plays mostly with his characteristic organistic sound: long deep sustained notes.


This is music far removed from the dance floor. These are abstractions, at least as played by Jordi, whose style here resembles his Demachy and his Gibbons. Once again I can't help but wonder whether Bach was influenced by Lyra Viol in the last three suites for cello.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 14, 2016, 01:55:52 PM
(http://a1.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Music/v4/72/07/4c/72074c12-3202-7c1c-9e3c-ef34c397159c/cover170x170.jpeg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/81Gl7%2B6iPqL._SX466_.jpg)


It's strange that the  summits of English viol music should come right at the very start, with Christopher Tye, and right at the very end, with Henry Purcell. I would not be surprised to learn that the latter took the former as his main inspiration and model.

Two things are gobsmacking in Tye's music:  freedom, and variety.  His contrapuntal imagination, and his sense of how to vary textures is really impressive. God alone knows who Tye took as his models - I bet there was an impressive lost unwritten tradition of quasi-improvised viol playing in Britain.

Maybe the strangest thing about this music is that it's so emotionally enigmatic - are we faced with deep deep sadness, or deep deep joy? I cannot say. If I had not read Wittgenstein I would say that it expresses things that words can not.

There are only two substantial recordings of Tye - Savall and Spirit of Gambo. Both are impressive. Savall is lyrical and rapt, as you would expect. But he's not very colourful. SoG is brighter, more "awake", more articulated, and each viol seems to have a more distinct personality. I have a strong preference for Gambo, but as with all these things you have to suck it and see.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on April 30, 2016, 10:29:09 PM
(http://rymimg.com/lk/f/l/0076a815ab8839eacdc22657669c83a0/3710101.jpg)


Pierre Hantai does for Farnaby what he did and continues to do for Scarlatti.

Quote from: Pierre Hantaï in interview here http://next.liberation.fr/culture/2002/07/20/pierre-hantai-revise-son-scarlatti_410746
Scarlatti n'est pas Bach. Son langage fait de courtes cellules répétitives qui créent et alternent des couleurs et climats très variés ne se rapproche en rien de ce qui était connu à son époque. Pour le comprendre, il faut être attentif à ces particularités structurelles, être coloriste dans l'âme.

 Mutatis mutandis for his Farnaby. He produces sounds from his harpsichord which no one had made before, the rhythms can turn from ferocious to oneiric on the blink of an eye; there's playfulness aplenty - boisterous humour, and horse play.

 
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 01, 2016, 02:57:37 AM

Anyway, a reminder of a great Farnaby disc I picked as one of my favourites of 2015, I doubt if you would regret it.. 8)


http://www.early-music.com/music/farnabys-dreame/

Q

Yes I think this is a joyful CD, played with a twinkle in the eye.

The style in many ways reminds me of the old one by Bradford Tracey.

(http://c3.cduniverse.ws/resized/250x500/music/571/2600571.jpg)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 08, 2016, 08:39:48 PM
Yes, and Payne also recorded the In Nomine no. IX on organ for Vox in a late 1960es 3 LP Fitzwilliam Virginal Book excerpts Box, his recording debut I think. IMO it is even more noble than the Naxos recording.

http://www.amazon.de/Fitzwilliam-Virginal-Book-Joseph-Payne/dp/B000009JZP/ref=sr_1_27?s=music&ie=UTF8&qid=1446673207&sr=1-27&keywords=joseph+payne

Does your copy say what instruments he's playing?
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on May 09, 2016, 02:01:58 AM
Does your copy say what instruments he's playing?

No, neither the CD item I own nor the original LP release, which I have parted with indicates IIRC the organ. I suppose, it is a modest sized modern organ. It has got some lovely principal and flute stops.

I can upload it for you, if necessary.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 09, 2016, 03:02:47 AM
No, neither the CD item I own nor the original LP release, which I have parted with indicates IIRC the organ. I suppose, it is a modest sized modern organ. It has got some lovely principal and flute stops.

I can upload it for you, if necessary.

No, I have it, in fact I like it. The organ sounds modest but the harpsichord sounds huge!

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on May 09, 2016, 03:46:19 AM
No, I have it, in fact I like it. The organ sounds modest but the harpsichord sounds huge!

I recall from the text of the LP release (IIRC there was a picture of Payne sitting at the instrument, and the name of the maker was written on it), that the harpsichord was built by Eric Herz, a revival kind of instrument like Goff and Pleyel, I suppose. Even Anthony Newman has used Herz' instruments for recordings.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 11, 2016, 10:04:18 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81WXCTOCzVL._SX522_.jpg)

Martin Souter plays English music at Knole.

Martin Souter does not seek to thrill or impress or entertain. He uses very little rubato, his basic tempos are often slow and there is little variation in tempo, the registrations are sober. The voicing is transparent and quite lively.  He creates  tension and release despite the complete absence of exuberance, the music is not dead. I'm not sure how he does this - I think it has to do with the way the textures change, the voices accumulate. His style is studied. As a listening experience it is both sweet and stimulating: the adrenaline never flows but he woos you.

Farnaby is treated in the same way as Byrd, who is treated in the same way as Bull. I particularly enjoyed the Byrd G minor Fantasia.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 12, 2016, 09:31:44 PM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0001/057/MI0001057703.jpg)

Derek Adlam plays Bull and Farnaby on a harpsichord, a muselar and an organ. I've been focussing on the harpsichord music. In general you could say that Adlam's harpsichord style is expansive, introspective, refined and serious. He is never flamboyant. He can drive a harpsichord to make it produce all sorts of delicate effects, and to make it tell an interesting story with the music.

The recital opens with the most beautiful, the most varied (emotionally, texturally) and the longest (over 19.5 mins.)  performance of Bull's Walsingham Variations I've ever heard. It is a revelation. More dashing harpsichord performances I know may capture a spirit of anger, but they do not do justice to the epic quality in Bull's creation.

Farnaby's Woody Cock is successful for similar reasons. He lets the music breathe, and he gives each variation a distinctive character.

The recital ends with a harpsichord performance of Bull's In Nomine 9, which was my only disappointment, since I felt it wasn't as noble and inspired as Joseph Payne's harpsichord performance. Of course I may have been just tired by this point, and I'll revisit it.


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: The new erato on June 12, 2016, 10:30:35 PM
Woody Cock on a muselar? Coinsidering a common meaning of mus in Norwegian, this puts a whole new spin on my interest in old music.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 17, 2016, 08:49:13 AM
(http://www.musicamano.com/music/bis722_724.jpg) (https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/5118XZERH2L.jpg)



I just listened to two pieces by Dowland  played by Lindberg (BIS)  and O'Dette - the pavan P 18 and The Dream P 75.   

Lindberg  gets less colour and warmth from his instrument than O'Dette, and the performance is less free with ornamentation and arpeggiation. I would say that O'Dette finds a greater emotional range too, and O'Dette's sound has a greater sense of room ambience.

Lindberg comes closer to my view of what this sort of music sounds like, in particular in his mixture of expression and control. I prefer Lindberg to O'Dette.

In particular I found Lindberg infinitely more affecting than O'Dette in The Dream, where there's an unwanted extrovert quality, at least in so far as you can ever be extrovert on a lute! I thought Lindberg is intense, refined and deep.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 17, 2016, 08:52:56 AM
Woody Cock on a muselar? Coinsidering a common meaning of mus in Norwegian, this puts a whole new spin on my interest in old music.

No, on a harpsichord. I've been listening a lot to Adlam's recording and I think it is wonderful, especially in the big harpsichord sets of variations.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 18, 2016, 09:32:10 PM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0001/121/MI0001121988.jpg)

Nigel North plays John Dowland's The Dream P 75. After a pretty straightforward start,  he moves from a simple melody/accompaniment model and he tries to bring out the inner voices, I think not very successfully because the voices don't seem to be in any sort of living relationship.


(http://store.acousticsounds.com/images/large/XXXX__75991__06092011051126-7118.jpg)

Anthony Bailes plays the Dream, a lovely heartfelt performance which along with Lindberg's is my favourite I think.

If any lutenists out there have the time to listen to Thomas Dunford's Dream and help me appreciate it that would be nice, I don't want to just dismiss it as a train wreck.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 05, 2016, 09:31:12 AM
(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51gU%2BVXl-nL.jpg)  (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51wk8ZwJSeL._SX466_.jpg)   (http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/51A%2Bt1qrTVL.jpg)


Thomas Tomkins Offertory is a big study in rhythm and imitation, I have three performances:

Hadrien Jourdan on the British built (Dallam) 17th century organ at Lanvellec. The performance is almost symphonic in the sense recommended as authentic by Stef Tuinstra in his notes on Georg Boehm: Jourdan ain't shy of using all the colourful stops at his disposal. The performance also reflects his view in the booklet that all but the last pieces by Tomkins are extravagant and impulsive.

Bernhard Klapprott on the 17th century meantone tuned organ at Uttum. The organ sounds old but more faceless than Jourdan's and the performance is more sober. 

Bertrand Cuiller on a modern copy of a Dutch style 16th century harpsichord, he turns it into a real virtuoso keyboard piece, exciting from the point of view of keyboard fireworks, fast and furious. .

(http://www.resonusclassics.com/image/cache/data/albums/RES10143-500x500.jpg)

Stephen Farr plays the elusive and epic Tomkins Offertory on this CD, he uses a modern neo baroque chamber organ, Taylor and Boody, modified meantone tuned, like the tuning of the Schnitger/Norden

http://www.taylorandboody.com/opus_pages/opus_66/specification.html

Farr's style is sensual, and he errs towards serenity, but in some of the more ardent divisions  towards the end especially, he finds passion aplenty. I don't know if this isn't the best performance of the offertory I have ever heard (how's that for British a double negative!)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 11, 2016, 07:06:42 AM
(http://www.fretwork.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/03/Dowland-Lachrimae.jpg)

Fretwork play Dowland, including the Lachrimae. The word which comes to mind when I listen to this is - light. That's to say, despite the evident distressing nature of the music, there is absolutely no sense of being weighed down by melancholy.There's a sense of an ensemble which has so mastered the music that they can, as it were, let themselves go, abandon themselves. The sound they make is wonderful, meltingly wonderful. And the classicism of it, the sense of poised emotion, is very attractive and maybe original.  The complexity of the emotional landscape is impressive: it's like the melancholy is never overwhelming and is always relieved by intimations of joy.

The 1604 Lachrimae featured not just the famous seven pavans, but also " divers other pavans, galliards and allemands, set forth for the lute, viols, or violons." I'm coming to the opinion that the whole thing is one of those anthologies where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts, and that there's a sort of serendipitous coherence, like Orgelbuchlein IMO. Maybe I should have said even greater. At least I can say this with confidence: this is a great CD to hear from start to finish.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on July 11, 2016, 10:25:45 AM

Fretwork play Dowland, including the Lachrimae. The word which comes to mind when I listen to this is - light. That's to say, despite the evident distressing nature of the music, there is absolutely no sense of being weighed down by melancholy.There's a sense of an ensemble which has so mastered the music that they can, as it were, let themselves go, abandon themselves. The sound they make is wonderful, meltingly wonderful. And the classicism of it, the sense of poised emotion, is very attractive and maybe original.  The complexity of the emotional landscape is impressive: it's like the melancholy is never overwhelming and is always relieved by intimations of joy.

I think they are very English, gentleman-like in their approach. Yes, maybe rather authentic.

My absolute favorites however are the opulent sounding Rose Consort, and the more emotionally shaped Dowland Consort. Also The Consort of Music deserves a mention, to some degree it resembles Fretwork in this music. Interesting to note, that a number of the involved musicians are common to some of these four groups.

I warm less to the groups which use instruments of the violin family (e.g.The Parley of Instruments, Kings Noyse), maybe I find the balance uneven, or miss the rich viol sound. I recently parted with Savall's recording, which I find too heavy in the expression, it feels like the air, just before a thunder breaks out.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 11, 2016, 08:20:24 PM
I'm very keen on Savall's phrasing, the way he pauses. And the colour. And somehow the fact that he plays galiards with the pavans lightens the thing up a bit.

2016 is the year of the Lachrimae, with two new releases (Phantasm released a couple of weeks ago, and The Chelys Consort due for release later.)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on July 12, 2016, 12:58:55 AM
I'm very keen on Savall's phrasing, the way he pauses. And the colour. And somehow the fact that he plays galiards with the pavans lightens the thing up a bit.

I decidedly prefer the Lacrima Pavans played in continuity, like a set of variations.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: HIPster on July 29, 2016, 02:52:37 PM
An utterly charming and convincing recording from Charivari Agreable ~



Superb!  :)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 04, 2016, 09:23:01 PM
(http://a4.mzstatic.com/us/r30/Music/v4/2c/69/a9/2c69a972-f7d6-7702-7623-f134f917374f/cover170x170.jpeg)

This selection of music from the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book is a favourite for three reasons.

First, Kenneth Weiss can really drive a harpsichord, he can create a huge variety of colours and textures and ornaments and touches, and he uses this technical skill with great discretion to make atmospheric music - a poet first and foremost.

And second his grasp how to manage the relationships between voices to produce music which is contrapuntally daring is really astonishing. I'd noticed that before in his Bach, where it's a commonplace that the music functions in part through its counterpoint. But to find the same approach here in British music is surprising and revealing, because you'd think it would harm the music's lyrical flow. But not at all: Weiss's vision, so expertly implemented, is of fluid music brought to life by its complex and dramatic interplay of voices.

And third, the depth of his thinking is evident in the music making. There is nothing formulaic in this recording: every piece has been allocated its own atmosphere and meaning.

The result is a Fitzwilliam Virginal Book which is based on paradox. First, at the level of the content, in Weiss's hands these Fitzwilliam pieces are at one and the same time radiant and intimate.

But more than this, he reveals music which is on the one hand a coherent structure which flows inevitably from the first note to the last. And on the other music which is interrupted by clashes, dissonances, moments of respiration, musical surprises and explosions.


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 06, 2016, 09:16:01 AM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0000/991/MI0000991031.jpg)

The vision in this album of Elizabethan music played by Colin Tilney is solar and intense and lyrical, fluid. The instrument (a virginal?)  is muscular and clear. Tinley's touch, the way each note is linked to the ones adjacent to it, makes me think of a shower of diamonds, sunlight reflecting on the sea in summer.

The whole think comes together to make something hypnotic and irresistible and very far from anodyne.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 07, 2016, 03:42:27 AM
(http://direct-ns.rhap.com/imageserver/v2/albums/Alb.50341309/images/500x500.jpg)

Very great recording this, on characterful organs interestingly tuned and played with sweep and panache and joie de vivre. I'll put this here as the versions streaming are not well tagged. It has some things in common with Tilney's Elizabethan dances CD above - it is sunny and it is impossible to stop listening once you start.

Thurston Dart plays English Organ Music

St. Lawrence’s, Appleby [1-6], Holy Trinity Chapel, Staunton Harold [7-9]

St. John’s, Wolverhampton [10-19], All Saints’, Rotherham [20-25]

1   WILLIAM BYRD (1543-1623)   A Fancy (Ladye Nevells Booke No.36)   5-45
2       A Voluntarie (Ladye Nevells Booke No.42)   2-33
3   JOHN BULL (1562-1628)   Salvator Mundi Deus (British Library Add. Mus. MS 23623)   1-32
4       Fantasia (Vienna Library 17771 fol. 10)   2-57
5   ORLANDO GIBBONS (1583-1625)   In Nomine (Cosyn’s Virginal Book, page 178)   2-32
6       Fantasia (Cosyn’s Virginal Book, page 162)   2-41
7   THOMAS TOMKINS (1572-1656)   Fancy (Christ Church Library, Oxford 1113 No.59)   2-05
8   JOHN BLOW (1649-1708)   Verset in D Minor (Brit. Libr. Add. Mus. MS 31468 fol. 16)   2-59
9       Prelude in A Re (Brit. Libr. Add. Mus. MS 34695 fol. 21)   2-42
10   MATTHEW LOCKE (c. 1622-1677)   For a Double Organ (Melothesia, page 82)   2-41
11   HENRY PURCELL (1659-1695)   Voluntary on the Old Hundredth Z 721   3-10
12       Verset (Christ Church Library, Oxford , 1179 page 36)   1-04
13   MAURICE GREENE (1695-1755)   Voluntary No. 2 (Largo; Andante) (published c.1780)   3-45
14   G. F. HANDEL(1685-1759)   Fugue in F HWV 611   2-43
15-19       Suite: Entrée, Menuet, Gavotte, Air Lentement, Concerto (Allegro)   6-24
20   HENRY PURCELL   Voluntary in G Major Z 720   3-07
21       Voluntary in C Major Z 717   1-12
22       Verse in F major Z 716   1-24
23   JAMES NARES (1715-1783)   Introduction and Fugue (Six Fugues, London, 1772)   4-36
24   WILLIAM BOYCE (1710-1779)   Voluntary No. 7 (Ten Voluntaries , c.1785)   4-49
25   JOHN STANLEY (1713-1786)   Voluntary Op.7 No.9 (Ten Voluntaries , 1754)   3-33


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 08, 2016, 07:44:59 AM
(http://eil.com/images/main/Christopher+Hogwood+The+Fitzwilliam+Virginal+Book+532639.jpg)


Hogwood's vision of the music in this recording of selections from The Fitzwilliam Virginal Book seems to be essentially that it's light flowing lyrical elegant song and dance. Clear pulse; always forward motion; clean articulation;  when the music is virtuosic (as in Mundy's Robin) the virtuosity is delicate, modest, refined rather than self promoting bravura; the flow of the music is imperturbable, never really ruffled by a rebellious secondary voice or an attention seeking agogic accent.

There is not much  psychologising or spiritualising. For Hogwood, the expressive impact is often present in an unambiguous way -  a jolly jig, a touching tune. I wouldn't want to suggest that what he does is neutral though, far from it. There's enough intensity and control projected to communicate his commitment to what he's doing.

At it's best the result is really very charming, a pleasure to hear: engaging and relaxing, especially in Peter Philips (But Philips always brings the best out of people.)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Drasko on August 18, 2016, 10:53:59 AM
Picked up today used LP of Colin Tilney playing Byrd, Bull, Farnaby, Gibbons and Tomkins. It's on DG Archiv and I'm not sure it ever had a CD release. Titled Music for Virginal but majority is played on nice sounding Italian 17th century harpsichord, four pieces are played on Dutch 16th century double virginal, another fine instrument but I think the recording is quite close and there is certain ping to the sound of the instrument that can get bit disconcerting. From single spin Tilney's playing seems trenchant and no nonsense.

https://www.discogs.com/Colin-Tilney-Music-For-Virginal/release/4074320
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 25, 2016, 03:45:19 AM
(http://i.prs.to/t_200/28947847670.jpg)

I like this recording by Anthony Rooley, of music by Anthony Holborne, very much. Part of it is the timbres, the sound quality. It  is rich sounding, colourful, but it is not at all bright. This seems to give the music a dusky and mysterious quality which personally I find very attractive.

Also there's the style. Everything appears totally natural: like a simple, naïve expression. I'm sure that is not true - I'm sure it's art hiding art. Nevertheless what they do is, in my response at least, rich in feeling.  Rich in feeling but without ever lapsing into anything resembling a caricature of  melancholy or cheerfulness. It's a case where a phlegmatic English Gentleman approach is, for me at least, more moving that an ardent one.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 28, 2016, 05:16:15 AM
(http://media.mdt.co.uk/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/H/M/HMU907625.jpg)

Richard Boothby plays these solo viol pieces by William Lawes with no sense of pleasure or of wonder and with very little fantasy. He is the quintessence of matter-of-fact. He projects a feeling of total seriousness and absolute control. 

It is beautifully recorded and his viol is rather nice sounding.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 03, 2016, 03:59:20 AM
(http://www.arkivmusic.com/graphics/covers/non-muze/full/80404aa.jpg)

I think this recital disc by Rachelle Taylor is outstanding, one of the greatest British keyboard recitals.

She's a colourist in her soul and she has a feel for how to make this music sound soulful, meaningful. The overall feeling is often inward and passionate cantabile, but I wouldn't want to give the impression that she can't be playful when she wats to be (in Bull for example.) She knows how to make the pulse of the music clear without ever pounding chords.

I came across it while listening to harpsichord performances of Tomkins's Sad Pavan, which everyone plays. That's what drew my attention to her, though I had heard her play Tallis before, I didn't know that she'd done more.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 05, 2016, 11:26:36 PM


My absolute favorites however are the opulent sounding Rose Consort,

It's a bit too expressively restrained for me, at least as a cycle (I note that in my recording they interleaved songs, but I've not heard them like that.)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 10, 2016, 06:41:22 AM
(https://davidvanooijen.files.wordpress.com/2015/12/cd_months.jpg?w=604)


What is remarkable about this recording of music by Christopher Simpson is that somehow they make it feel like more than just music. It feels like they're using the music to express something which is humane and wise. At the level of sound, they reveal a music which is both full of asperities and sweet, tender. It both has a living heartbeat, and is soft and singing.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 12, 2016, 07:03:21 AM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/020/MI0001020485.jpg)


Savall presents a John Coprario who is fine composer with a distinctive voice. Fine because the fantasias especially show an attractive complexity. And distinctive because the articulation is so incisive - the result is not at all lyrical, more like short snatches of music blown in on the wind. It makes me think of recordings that Savall was making thirty years after - like his second Tobias Hume CD. It's a style of viol playing I associate most with Pandolfo (who didn't participate in the recording), a style I like a lot. Rare music, this.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 21, 2016, 12:28:32 AM
(https://img.discogs.com/qxsLkg0KgIXuA-hrJzcfR1i6n-8=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(40)/discogs-images/R-8056686-1463157412-3104.jpeg.jpg)

If anyone's looking for a single compilation CD of 17th century English viol consort music, then I doubt you could do better than this one from the Kuijken Bros and Robert Kohnen. The style is balanced, refined, expressive and supple and sometimes "psychological" (I'm thinking of the Matthew Locke fantazias, which show him to be of the same ilk as Tobias Hume.) They communicate their passion for the music somehow.  They're clearly playing as a team and responding and listening. The selection is interesting and unusual - an attractive mixture of variations, fantasies, dances - and that makes the whole recording a good listening experience. The sound quality is excellent.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 14, 2017, 08:27:13 AM
(http://target.scene7.com/is/image/Target/51922604?wid=450&hei=450&fmt=pjpeg)

Alina Rotaru's vision of Byrd, Gibbons and Bull is angry. She pounds out the music in a one dimensional way, there's no emotional complexity here. Accents are forceful.  She likes to play fast. Rhythms are fairly rigid. It's thrilling but jejune.

Anyway that's my conclusion after two listens. I posted something like this yesterday but deleted it because I feared I may be doing her an injustice. But no. I hope someone will point out the error of my ways.

In fact I've come across this conception of English music before, in a live performance of Bull's Walsingham Variations by Leon Berben. Bull and Byrd had a lot to feel angry about - but did Gibbons?

She's playing some sort of German harpsichord I believe, I haven't found more details.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on March 14, 2017, 03:52:00 PM
(http://target.scene7.com/is/image/Target/51922604?wid=450&hei=450&fmt=pjpeg)

Alina Rotaru's vision of Byrd, Gibbons and Bull is angry. She pounds out the music in a one dimensional way, there's no emotional complexity here. Accents are forceful.  She likes to play fast. Rhythms are fairly rigid. It's thrilling but jejune.

Anyway that's my conclusion after two listens. I posted something like this yesterday but deleted it because I feared I may be doing her an injustice. But no. I hope someone will point out the error of my ways.

In fact I've come across this conception of English music before, in a live performance of Bull's Walsingham Variations by Leon Berben. Bull and Byrd had a lot to feel angry about - but did Gibbons?

She's playing some sort of German harpsichord I believe, I haven't found more details.

She plays a single manual German harpsichord by Thomas and Barbara Wolf 1995 after Christian Vater 1738.

I did not associate to "angry" when listening to it, but found the playing more straightforward and less charming than the playing on her Sweelinck and Froberger CDs. I shall relisten.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: kishnevi on March 14, 2017, 06:56:09 PM
I am finishing up a runthrough of the L'Oiseau Lyre Medieval/Renaissance set. It contains enough items of interest that it should warrant the attention of anyone interested in the period in general. But it warrants mention on this thread because a substantial number of the performances are English music through 1650 or so. About ten are instrumental, and another half dozen or so are vocal.
Mi Verry Joy (Songs of the 15th century) *
Holborne Pavans and Galliards **
A Musical Banquet **
Morley Ayres and Madrigals**
Wilbye First and Second Sets of Madrigals**
Corprario Funeral Tears and Consort Music**
Gibbons Madrigals and Motets **
Music from the Time of Elizabeth I ***
Byrd Consort Music **
Byrd My Lady Nevells Booke (selection)#
Cozens Lute Book •
Fitzwilliam Virginal Book (selection) (double CD)#
Lawes Setts for violins and division viols **
Maynard Twelve Wonders of the World **
Dowland First book of songs **
Dowland Lachrymae **
Jenkins Consort Music **

* Medieval Ensemble of London
** Consort of Music
***Academy of Ancient Music
• Anthony Rooley, lute
# Christopher​ Hogwood, keyboards​

The Byrd Music Consort and the Lawes are described as being "first international CD release", and of the rest, I think only the Dowland recordings are in general circulation.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on April 05, 2017, 08:19:37 AM
(http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/MTUyOFgxNjAw/z/0iIAAOSwLEtYgdhA/$_35.JPG)

Revisiting this recording of music by Peter Philips by Emer Buckley after experiencing Rubsam's Bach on Lautewerck has made me realise why this is such an important recording. I don't think I'm deluding myself. Emer Buckley has found a way of making the voices independent and a way of putting them in a responsive and lively relation. She's greatly aided in this by her harpsichord - I don't know what it is because I haven't kept the booklet - because the timbre of the lower notes seem noticeably distinct from that of the higher ones, like different registers almost.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on April 13, 2017, 09:51:44 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81b7CRv0XXL._SL1500_.jpg)

Paolo Pandolfo, here with Robert Smith, has invented a new way of playing gamba. Instead of making the notes sing forth, he grazes the strings with his bow to produce an encapsulated sound. The result is a music with more air, music which is more like a whispered conversation than an aria.

They use the new technique ubiquitously in this CD, which mostly consists of sets of variations.  It is the main tool in their expressive armoury.

The result is both fascinating and annoying. Fascinating because the music sounds like no one else and hence as a taste of some new things which can be done with English viol music it is a valuable new CD. But the annoying problem is that there isn't enough variety in the music to make the recording a rewarding experience in itself. If only they had combined the encapsulated bowing with more traditional cantabile playing to add expressive variety. It's easy for me to talk of course, maybe it's not possible to make the music cohere if you do that. 

In a way the Pandolfo bowing reminds me of Glen Gould's staccato piano touch, which he too maybe used too often and too exclusively. 
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 16, 2017, 06:23:05 AM
(http://c3.cduniverse.ws/resized/250x500/music/459/8595459.jpg)

Eureka! Found a recording of Lawes's consorts with  organ which makes the music sound a bit more interesting. Prefer this one by Music's Recreation to Phantasm and Fretwork in the same pieces.


I got to find out about Music's Recreation when I found a fabulous recording of a Rameau Suite on Tidal.
Title: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 12, 2017, 06:07:19 AM
(https://ec-assets.sheetmusicplus.com/items/20142284/cover_images/cover-large_file.png)

John Toll plays Gibbons.

John Toll was a name unknown to me until a week ago when someone mentioned this recording dedicated to Gibbons' keyboard music. It turns out that he died young and was well appreciated as a continuo player.

The first thing to say is that John Toll could play harpsichord. That's to say he knows how to manage touch and voicing to create a variety of textures. And he could play little English organs too - registrations tasteful, never garish or dull or tiring; voicing clear at all times.

His style is very much in the Thurston Dart and Kenneth Gilbert  mould: move the music forward, make it thrilling and dramatic, play up the hummable tunes, minimise ornaments and agogics, keep it light and even playful, think about the big structure, make the pulse steady and clear.

There's no shortage of poetry of a sort though, at times attractively lyrical (Lord Salisbury's Pavan for example), and I think this is a valuable complement for Laurent Stewart's CD, and Richard Egarr's. It's attractive playing but somehow generic: what I want to say is that Stewart and Egarr give Gibbons a distinctive voice, but many of these pieces in the hands of Toll sound as though they could be by almost any old Englishman - Byrd, Tomkins, Faranaby . . . I'm sure some people will prefer it to the other two for the straightforward playfulness. Orlando Gibbons as a hearty plain speaking cockney cheeky chappy - John Bull or maybe John  Falstaff.

I don't go so far as to prefer it, but I am glad to have it.  Gibbons has not been well served on record and it's good to have this one. Good instruments and very well recorded.

The booklet contains a memoir of John Todd by John Holloway (enjoyer of good food and wine, big band jazz, the English countryside . . . ). The harpsichord is after a Ruckers and the organ is the one at Addington Hall (1693)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 16, 2017, 11:39:07 AM
(http://www.metronome.co.uk/uploads/2/8/0/9/28093973/s704681781491004164_p68_i1_w360.jpeg)

Concordia, Lawes. The blend they make allows each instrument to show a strong character. Their approach to the polyphony helps in this respect too, because it's staggered to produce complex textures. All this makes the music sound not so lyrical, and from my perspective it greatly benefits from that. They tend to be inclined towards reflective / introspective performances rather than lively ones, again something which I very much like, one of the recordings which has helped me to see that Lawes may deserve his reputation after all. (It's taken a long time for me to fall in love with any music by Lawes, but that's been a question of finding a sympathetic approach I think.)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 07, 2017, 06:48:57 AM
(https://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/originals/11/32/4a/11324a726f6fd6464aed4f65cb037fef.jpg)

Kenneth Gilbert plays Byrd, Bull, Tomkins, Gibbons etc at Lanvellec. This is wonderfully recorded and the (English) organ sounds just right in the music. Everyone who has an interest in old organs will enjoy hearing this CD.

And the performance is also very passionate - Gilbert here (as always) seems a bedfellow of Thurston Dart - the no nonsense and move it along vigorously school of music. But it's fine that way. More than fine, because it's so intelligently phrased.

Basically this is an aural joy from start to end. Anyone interested can pick up the CD easily here

http://www.skolvreizh.com/index.php?page=shop.product_details&flypage=flypage_images.tpl&product_id=23&category_id=10&vmcchk=1&option=com_virtuemart&Itemid=3
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 09, 2017, 05:03:20 AM
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/064/MI0001064507.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

Aapo Hakinnen plays the Dowland/Byrd Pavan Lachrimae and other things.  It's one one the most imaginative, personal Byrd performances I know. Most of the things on this CD are well worth hearing. The harpsichord he uses, by Vito Trasuntino, may well allow for all sorts of enharmonic effects, I'm not sure. Anyway the tuning is audibly good, I suppose some sort of meantone. I think it makes a big difference to how interesting the music sounds. This could be the best Byrd harpsichord playing I've heard.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 25, 2017, 06:41:48 AM
(http://www.heinrichvontrotta.eu/Reflexe/Copertine/Vol-09-03.jpg)

Tilney at Knoll. I think this is tremendous, and a major contrast to what his contemporaries like Dart and Gilbert were making of English organ music. TIlney so much more contemplative and so much less about moving the music forward.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 25, 2017, 06:45:04 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81b7CRv0XXL._SL1500_.jpg)

Paolo Pandolfo, here with Robert Smith, has invented a new way of playing gamba. Instead of making the notes sing forth, he grazes the strings with his bow to produce an encapsulated sound. The result is a music with more air, music which is more like a whispered conversation than an aria.

They use the new technique ubiquitously in this CD, which mostly consists of sets of variations.  It is the main tool in their expressive armoury.

The result is both fascinating and annoying. Fascinating because the music sounds like no one else and hence as a taste of some new things which can be done with English viol music it is a valuable new CD. But the annoying problem is that there isn't enough variety in the music to make the recording a rewarding experience in itself. If only they had combined the encapsulated bowing with more traditional cantabile playing to add expressive variety. It's easy for me to talk of course, maybe it's not possible to make the music cohere if you do that. 

In a way the Pandolfo bowing reminds me of Glen Gould's staccato piano touch, which he too maybe used too often and too exclusively.

I'm quoting myself just to say that I've now fallen in love with this recording, whatever reservations I had in Spring don't matter in Autumn, it sounds wonderful, the music is outstanding, the performances committed.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 30, 2017, 11:33:13 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81FrNn%2BhMAL._SX522_.jpg)

A life affirming and radiant version of Dowland's Lachrimae played by Phantasm. What is maybe most impressive is the silences, they have completely mastered their ideas about the articulation of the music. Lyrical, forward moving, joyful.

They play the music without interruption, with hardly any emotional difference between each Lachrimae. And there's a strong sense of forward motion. The result is that it's really is hard to know where one piece ends and another begins, it's the most integrated and coherent interpretation of the Lachrimae I know, one single piece of music, not seven.

In terms of the polyphony, the music is dominated by Lawrence Dreyfus's lyrical line, it's not that you can't hear the other voices, it's rather that they've balanced it in a way that the ear is strongly attracted to the top line. I am confident that the recording is truthful in this respect, because that's how they sound in the concert hall. Phantasm are melody and accompaniment merchants, not complex contrapuntalists.

Everyone must decide for themselves whether this conception is satisfying. Their  execution is impeccable. The  sound on the recording exceptional.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on September 30, 2017, 12:20:02 PM

In terms of the polyphony, the music is dominated by Lawrence Dreyfus's lyrical line, it's not that you can't hear the other voices, it's rather that they've balanced it in a way that the ear is strongly attracted to the top line. I am confident that the recording is truthful in this respect, because that's how they sound in the concert hall. Phantasm are melody and accompaniment merchants, not complex contrapuntalists.


A pity, since the Lacrimae is complex contrapoint.

What would you think of AoF played in a similar way?
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 30, 2017, 12:41:33 PM

What would you think of AoF played in a similar way?

Yes well I heard Phantasm play Art of Fugue in concert, and I was not satisfied.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on September 30, 2017, 09:34:39 PM
(https://www.naxos.com/SharedFiles/pdf/rear/8.550603r.pdf#)

I just want to plug this general Gibbons recording, which I think is really satisfying. The (substantial) contribution from The Rose Consort of Viols is the best Gibbons consort playing I've heard; I am very much enjoying the emotional restraint and the virtuosity of Timothy Roberts on the harpsichord, he contributes very little unfortunately; the singing of Red Byrd and Tessa Bonner is by turns joyful, rousing, affecting, and their voices are characterful because of their regional British accents. This is a great CD, every home should have one.

Rose Consort of Viols has become a favourite viol consort.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on October 01, 2017, 12:53:34 AM

Rose Consort of Viols has become a favourite viol consort.

Actually also mine since long. Their Lacrimae is unsurpassed.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on October 11, 2017, 03:17:57 AM
(http://mp3red.me/cover/5277462-460x460/pavana-the-virgin-harpsichord.jpg)
I wonder if this is on anyone's radar. Sempe plays an interesting variety of instruments and English renaissance composers. I own a few recordings of English music but I've never deeply delved into it. Lately I've been much into earlier music, working my way back from Froberger to Frescobaldi. For some reason, Frescobaldi strikes me as more melancholic but I've been attracted to it. (https://www.music-bazaar.com/album-images/vol29/1042/1042854/2907231-big/William-Byrd-Pescodd-Time-cover.jpg)
What really sucked me in is the performance of John Bull's In Nomine, MB 9 on Cuiller (another Bull piece I like is "Chromatic Pavan: Queen Elizabet's" from Sempe). This is the most moving piece of music I've heard from this genre: dreamy, evocative, emotional... Is this English music MUCH less concerned with counterpoint than the Italian? The Virginal school was not about counterpoint so much? So, they didn't play virginals in Italy then?
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 11, 2017, 07:07:43 AM
I don't believe that the English composers were less interested in counterpoint than the Italians. Have a listen to Byrd's Fantasias and Pavans and Galliards, of Farnaby's Fantasias.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on October 11, 2017, 02:22:44 PM
I don't believe that the English composers were less interested in counterpoint than the Italians. Have a listen to Byrd's Fantasias and Pavans and Galliards, of Farnaby's Fantasias.
Yes, I don't mean counterpoint I think. There must be some clear technical difference between Frescobaldi and Byrd? Is it less fugal then? Byrd is really lovely. Often sentimental. Not severe. A pavan is a dance, right? Are Frescobaldi's partitas dances? It doesn't seem like it. Is it more religious? Both are interested in variations I guess. One thing I find very interesting is the instruments. The English virginals.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 12, 2017, 11:57:05 AM
I haven't really looked into this much, but my feeling just from listening fairly informally is that Byrd's keyboard music never became as free and as expressive as Frescobaldi in Bk 2. But I'm a bit biased maybe because I love Bk 2.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 15, 2017, 06:26:41 AM
Yes, I don't mean counterpoint I think. There must be some clear technical difference between Frescobaldi and Byrd? Is it less fugal then? Byrd is really lovely. Often sentimental. Not severe. A pavan is a dance, right? Are Frescobaldi's partitas dances? It doesn't seem like it. Is it more religious? Both are interested in variations I guess. One thing I find very interesting is the instruments. The English virginals.

Frescobaldi wrote loads of dances -- correnti, galiards, balletti. I'm not sure it's his best work though.

I read somewhere that he used to play improvised dances in operas. (That somehow brings it all down to earth -- Frescobaldi improvising a dance to please the crowds at the opera like a Handel organ concerto! Some things it's better not to think about!)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on October 16, 2017, 05:27:03 AM
Frescobaldi wrote loads of dances -- correnti, galiards, balletti. I'm not sure it's his best work though.

I read somewhere that he used to play improvised dances in operas. (That somehow brings it all down to earth -- Frescobaldi improvising a dance to please the crowds at the opera like a Handel organ concerto! Some things it's better not to think about!)
One of the joys of this kind of music is the "time travel." Bach's music SEEMS modern - but that may be PARTLY the way or frequency that it's played. Frescobaldi is really an OTHER. I suppose anything "old" can give that feeling. It's a perception based on a lot of factors. Anyway, my point is that something like Frescobaldi is genuinely strange sounding in a way I particularly like. It's really another world. I cannot imagine him being asked to entertain the crowd with dances. In my mind, I imagine some of the dancers dropping dead from plague in the middle. 
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 16, 2017, 07:13:49 AM
I don't think Frescobaldi's Bk 2 toccatas are strange, on the contrary I think they're familiar because, really, they're madrigals for keyboard. I think this is what one of his great contribution to music consists in: bringing to keyboard the opportunity for making expressive music like vocal music, the opportunity for deploying devices which singers use routinely  - suspensions, tempo changes etc. This is in my opinion what Vartolo understood probably better than anyone, it explains his tempi and his approach to phrasing and rubato.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on October 16, 2017, 12:32:23 PM
I don't think Frescobaldi's Bk 2 toccatas are strange, on the contrary I think they're familiar because, really, they're madrigals for keyboard. I think this is what one of his great contribution to music consists in: bringing to keyboard the opportunity for making expressive music like vocal music, the opportunity for deploying devices which singers use routinely  - suspensions, tempo changes etc. This is in my opinion what Vartolo understood probably better than anyone, it explains his tempi and his approach to phrasing and rubato.

An interesting thought, I think, and I tend to agree with  you.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on October 16, 2017, 08:44:59 PM
I don't think Frescobaldi's Bk 2 toccatas are strange, on the contrary I think they're familiar because, really, they're madrigals for keyboard. I think this is what one of his great contribution to music consists in: bringing to keyboard the opportunity for making expressive music like vocal music, the opportunity for deploying devices which singers use routinely  - suspensions, tempo changes etc. This is in my opinion what Vartolo understood probably better than anyone, it explains his tempi and his approach to phrasing and rubato.
Maybe I’m just not familiar enough with vocal music. For the keyboard though, there’s an interesting circularity I like. I guess I’m used to music with more recognizable themes and devices. I want to say there’s a strangeness to the music but I guess it’s so subjective to one’s knowledge and experience.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 19, 2017, 12:59:23 PM
(https://cdbaby.name/j/o/jonathandunford2.jpg)

Jonathan Dunford plays Jenkins and Simpson. For me this has proved to be one of those recordings which makes little impact at first, but over time reveals itself to be nuanced and expressive and rewarding. Dunford plays in a disciplined way, his rubato and his ornaments are applied sparingly, and they are so well judged they appear to be a natural and non-intrusive part of the music.

Well recorded (but not well transferred by Spotify) the textures of the sounds are most attractive.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 27, 2017, 12:18:06 PM
(http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/2014/Apr14/Strike_the_viol_1409.jpg)

Philippe Pierlot & Co. play English music for little ensembles with viols: Jenkins, Locke, Simpson and a smattering of Lawes and Coperario. With this recording we are transported to a drawing room in Buckingham Palace, or somewhere like that. This is a recording fit for a king. It is exquisite playing, sensual, refined and polished, balanced and sane, noble. They play responsively, with a palpable sense of involvement and pleasure. Above all it is very British: phlegmatic.

Amazingly well recorded.


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on October 27, 2017, 12:24:59 PM
(https://www.hyperion-records.co.uk/jpegs/691062057127.png)

Christopher Tye : Complete Consort Music
Phantasm

Recording details: September 2016
Boxgrove Priory, Chichester, United Kingdom
Produced by Philip Hobbs
Engineered by Philip Hobbs
Release date: September 2017



I've only heard the samples of this recording, but I will eventually purchase it since I don't have any of Tye's instrumental music and this complete recording sounds excellent.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 28, 2017, 12:28:12 PM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/075/MI0001075711.jpg?partner=allrovi.com).     (https://www.music-bazaar.com/album-images/vol1022/1007/1007755/2874249-big/Fantasies-Verse-Anthems-Phantasm-2-picture.jpg)

I first got an inkling that John Ward is an interesting composer of viol music when I heard Phantasm's second recording, the one mad up of viol music and anthems. Part of the reason is that the physical quality of the sound - the textures of the strings and the presence and truthfulness  of the voices - is visceral.

This recording by The Rose Consort reveals Ward to be much more harmonically interesting than I'd appreciated from Phantasm, somehow the make the music sound full of very spicy combinations of notes. They also do something which I can't explain except by metaphor: they make the music shimmer like moonlight reflected on a rippling lake. Get the idea?

I haven't found a way of enjoying Phantasm's first recording yet, I'll try again sometime. I don't think there's anything else dedicated to Ward's viol music, maybe I've forgotten.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on October 29, 2017, 03:06:54 AM
I never warmed up to that John Ward recording by Phantasm.
Though Phantasm is not one my favourite viol consorts, my impression was that the composer is to blame - not very imaginative music, really...

As to Christopher Tye (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Tye) (1505 - c.1572) - I definitely was impressed by him.... :)

Enter this recent acquisition:


The playing of this recorder ensemble playing is on par with the Loekie Stardust Qt -  which is saying quite something....
And the music by Christopher Tye is simply gorgeous.

Recommended!  :)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 29, 2017, 03:47:41 AM
The things I like most about Ward's music are an introspective feeling, the freedom with which he explores dissonance, the convoluted counterpoint and the coherence of each piece - the architectural coherence.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 29, 2017, 04:26:01 AM
Michel Bernstein wrote an essay on Tye for the booklet of the Hesperion XX recording -- I'd like to read it if anyone can make a scan.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 30, 2017, 05:51:53 AM
(https://www.mdt.co.uk/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/R/I/RIC384.jpg)

L'Acheron Gibbons. This opens with a fantasia which takes 10 minutes. In the booklet they are explicit about their conception of the music

Quote
The Fantasy XXXIX for six viols is truly monumental, first of all because of its exceptional length.  Three sombre homorhythmic bars in the spirit of a pavane set the scene for all that will happen.  Thee entire work is in fact one single movement, without any change of mood or metre. It is an implacable flow of sound that a strict rhythmic pulse imbues with an almost hypnotic effect; this is interrupted only once by an unexpected modulation, after which all is as before.  e insistent pulse of the music resumes until it is exhausted.

No one else plays it in such a linear way  as far as I can see. I think that other performers vary the tempo and sound from one section to the next, producing something as dramatic as a Frescobaldi Toccata. But here we have something very old sounding, more like a ricercar by Willaert. I think both Rose Consort and Corncordia have recorded it - about three times faster than L'Archeron. But in truth, I can't be sure 100% they're playing the same music!

The sound of L'Acheron is totally distinctive, at first I thought there was something wrong with the recording but no. They have a new set of viols, they're very proud of it, they discuss it extensively, they think their balance is the best, the most informed.

This is promising to be a controversial and stimulating new release.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on October 30, 2017, 07:39:09 AM
I never warmed up to that John Ward recording by Phantasm.
Though Phantasm is not one my favourite viol consorts, my impression was that the composer is to blame - not very imaginative music, really...

As to Christopher Tye (https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christopher_Tye) (1505 - c.1572) - I definitely was impressed by him.... :)

Enter this recent acquisition:


The playing of this recorder ensemble playing is on par with the Loekie Stardust Qt -  which is saying quite something....
And the music by Christopher Tye is simply gorgeous.

Recommended!  :)

Q

I saw that recording, but am not a fan of recorder groups.  Too hooty.  I'll probably get the one by the group you don't like.   ;)



TD

Listening again to this old recording but still a goody

Elizabethan Consort Music 1558-1603
Jordi Savall

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61k62XMc80L._SX425_.jpg)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on October 30, 2017, 10:28:26 AM
I saw that recording, but am not a fan of recorder groups.  Too hooty.  I'll probably get the one by the group you don't like.   ;)

Ah, it's so gorgeous - you don't know what you're missing!  :)

Though I'm quite partial to Fretwork, I've put the Tye recording by Phantasm on the wishlist as wel... :D

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on October 30, 2017, 10:33:37 AM
(https://www.mdt.co.uk/media/catalog/product/cache/1/image/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/R/I/RIC384.jpg)

L'Acheron Gibbons. [....]

The sound of L'Acheron is totally distinctive, at first I thought there was something wrong with the recording but no. They have a new set of viols, they're very proud of it, they discuss it extensively, they think they're balance is the best, the most informed.

This is promising to be a controversial and stimulating new release.

Definitely going to sample that one... Thanks for posting.  :)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 30, 2017, 10:35:35 PM
From the booklet

Quote
Gibbons’ Fantasies enable us to discover a few aspects of the genre, even though the form’s primary characteristic is precisely its lack of a fixed structure. Th e underlying principle of these works is the succession of various thematic elements that are generally handled imitatively, repeating the same thematic elements in the different voices.  These can be simple restatements, although they are sometimes ornamented.  The fantasy form in principle does not make use of thematic development; these pieces are constructed from the succession of various elements that fit into and around each other, a sort of continuous music for which the Germans invented the highly apposite term durchkomponiert. The Fantasies for two instruments follow this definition totally; they are the inheritors of the Renaissance bicinium tradition, pieces that are often wrongly considered to be simple contrapuntal exercises.

This conception of the music as through composed means that sometimes there are less dramatic contrasts than you may expect from other performances.

Quote
We should not forget that Gibbons was not only a brilliant composer for keyboards but was also a church musician; religious feeling at that time could well be linked to a certain fanaticism in England at the beginning of the 17th century, as the new Anglican religion had introduced a new and visionary current and a certain revolutionary exaltation that is echoed in the music of the time. Neither is mysticism lacking in these sacred works, as they describe the architecture of heaven in an innovatory manner: music at that time was still considered to be a cosmic and an astral art, and music for the consort of viols was often seen as having an element of spirituality.

This explains the expressiveness possibly, the prayerfulness, inwardness, meditativeness.

These two aspects, through-composed and spiritual, seem to me to make the music sound very old rather than forward looking, or indeed like a composer from the start of the 17th century.

Quote
The first notes that we played on these six viols that were finally being played as a consort were in the wondrous acoustic of the Chapelle Notre-Dame de Centeilles (Siran). From the very first chords we were overwhelmed by this unheard of, extraordinary and unique sound, only to be overtaken almost immediately by an emotion that gripped us by the throat: it was as if a layer of dust had been washed away or a veil had been lifted; it seemed that an entire palette of colours and the most profound essence of the music had been finally revealed to us in full.

Quote
The organ was rightly the first instrument that came to mind when we came to analyse the sound of our consort: our viols were built in proportion to each other, with the dessus being half the size of the consort bass and the tenor three quarters; the instruments were therefore built to harmonise with each other, as are the pipes of an organ.  e musical result is final and irrevocable: for both harmony and counterpoint, the homogeneity and balance of the consort’s sound create the feeling of hearing one and the same instrument; the dissonances are as striking as they would be on an organ, whilst the shifting melodic lines are clear and easily distinguished.

I'm not sure what to make of these two comments in fact, I need to explore it more.

(http://Mace also advises using two instruments per line, “All truly and proportinably suited”. He then explains his rule for assembling a well-proportioned Chest of Viols:“Let your Bass be large”.)

Quote
Mace also advises using two instruments per line, “All truly and proportinably suited”. He then explains his rule for assembling a well-proportioned Chest of Viols:“Let your Bass be large”.

The depth of bass is quite a surprise - the bass viol is 80 cm.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on November 17, 2017, 06:07:16 PM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0003/575/MI0003575411.jpg?partner=allrovi.com) This is landing well with me as I continue indulging my kick of finding piano performances of music from this period.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on November 18, 2017, 01:22:01 AM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0003/575/MI0003575411.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

This is landing well with me as I continue indulging my kick of finding piano performances of music from this period.


To each his own... :D

My own little John Bull keyboard works collection is looking quite dandy with these awesome recordings:


(Organ works by Thilo Muster on Ifo)


(Harpsichord works by Mahan Esfahani and Peter Watchorn on Musica Omnia)

My main regret is that a sequel to Esfahani & Watchorn's succesfull "volume 1" never materialised..... ::)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: JCBuckley on November 18, 2017, 04:42:14 AM



(Harpsichord works by Mahan Esfahani and Peter Watchorn on Musica Omnia)

My main regret is that a sequel to Esfahani & Watchorn's succesfull "volume 1" never materialised..... ::)

Q

Que - I was in touch with Peter Watchorn quite recently, and he told me that he'll be recording vol 2 of the Bull series in the very near future
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on November 18, 2017, 04:55:55 AM
Que - I was in touch with Peter Watchorn quite recently, and he told me that he'll be recording vol 2 of the Bull series in the very near future

Wow, that's good news!  :)

Considering that the 1st volume was recorded 8 years ago, I'd given up on a sequel.....

Q

Edit: Oops, that was 8 years ago, not 18.....
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: JCBuckley on November 18, 2017, 06:55:12 AM
Wow, that's good news!  :)

Considering that the 1st volume was recorded 18 years ago, I'd given up on a sequel.....

Q

I've just dug out the last email I received from Peter, dated September. Quote: "Goldbergs and Art of Fugue still to go. John Bull is next. Volume 2 will contain the twelve In Nomine settings and the Hexachord Fantasias"
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on November 18, 2017, 07:27:57 AM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/057/MI0001057266.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)
Quite a good survey here. Interesting variety of instruments. Lively, intense performances. Almost psychedelic at times (maybe it's those meadow mushrooms)! I'm a fan of Sempe anyway.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on November 18, 2017, 07:46:29 AM
I've just dug out the last email I received from Peter, dated September. Quote: "Goldbergs and Art of Fugue still to go. John Bull is next. Volume 2 will contain the twelve In Nomine settings and the Hexachord Fantasias"

Absolutely great..... :) 

I guess in the past years Watchorn was distracted by his Bach project....

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 26, 2017, 05:49:12 AM
"Global" review of the Phantasm Tye (which I haven't heard) here, though it's a great shame that it doesn't take into account Spirit of Gambo's recording, which I like very much (in so much as I like Tye at all!)

http://wunderkammern.fr/2017/11/26/frettes-folles-la-musique-pour-consort-de-christopher-tye-par-phantasm/

I was particularly struck by the comment that

Quote
rendent justice à l’inventivité d’aventure un peu folle de Tye mais offrent également un écho très convaincant de la personnalité à la fois défiante, un brin arrogante dans la conscience de son originalité tout en étant soucieuse de plaire qui semble avoir été la sienne.

though I fear that being "soucieux de plaire" could kill the music, especially with their "ton plus direct et une fluidité plus allante [compared with Jordi] sans pour autant presser excessivement le pas ou demeurer à la surface des œuvres." We'll see.

The criticism of Savall that his Tye is "d’une beauté parfois un rien trop hiératique." is interesting given the new Acheron Gibbons. Maybe viol music is religious after all, in some sense. In truth I have no idea what's idiomatic and what isn't in English music.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on November 26, 2017, 06:22:59 AM
"Global" review of the Phantasm Tye (which I haven't heard) here, though it's a great shame that it doesn't take into account Spirit of Gambo's recording, which I like very much (in so much as I like Tye at all!)

I like The Spirit of Gambo.
Thanks for pointing out their Tye album, I wasn't aware! :)



Quote
The criticism of Savall that his Tye is "d’une beauté parfois un rien trop hiératique." is interesting given the new Archeron Gibbons. Maybe viol music is religious after all, in some sense. In truth I have no idea what's idiomatic and what isn't in English music.

Neither does Savall.....  8)

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on November 28, 2017, 03:01:20 PM
Interesting interview of Jeremy Denk by Leonard Lopate (of WNYC) during which Denk performs William Byrd and makes the case that rhythmic freedom was realized in early music and, to a certain extent, lost in succeeding periods. 
http://www.wnyc.org/story/pianist-jeremy-denk-plays-live/ (http://www.wnyc.org/story/pianist-jeremy-denk-plays-live/)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on December 08, 2017, 07:26:20 PM
(https://i.scdn.co/image/b48460fefbfba50b56227ed3dd5ac73f5d14947c)
I was about to begin this text with something like this: "True minimalists lived in the 16th – 17th centu- ries." And then I thought you might say: "Hmm, there he goes again talking about that minimalism." And it’s true: the word is so unfit. Human language is very limited, and every time we attempt to express something important we discover that our language simply doesn't work.
How can we explain what this music sounds like? How can we explain that it is more contemporary than contemporary music?
How can we explain that in the sounds written 300 – 400 years ago one can hear the whole volume of all European music of several centuries, as well as everything we now call ethnic music, from bagpipes and Celtic fiddles to Indian sitars?
A refined scent of jazz, and a punk band playing in a club around the corner. A dramatism stronger than Beethoven's, and the larger-than-life boundless space of a rock ballad.
As for the compositional technique, it is pretty simple. Composers of that time used to write the same things over and over again: exercises of sorts, endless variations on a chord sequence. Not only does this never get boring, but the longer you listen, the less you want it to stop. Each variation opens a door in front of you, and you walk through this endless enfilade and realize that it is none other but a way home.
And this, you could say, is minimalism.
All compositions included in this album were written certainly not for piano. The works of William Byrd are for the virginal (a British modification of the harpsichord). The works of Johann Pachelbel are for organ (Chaconne), and for strings (Canon). I play them on a modern piano, and I treat the scores with a lot of freedom. I don't change even a single note but for some reason it sounds as if it was written this morning.
The recording was made on a 1959 Steinway B. Each composition has its own sonic atmosphere. The way this piano responds to different types of touch and different playing styles is amazing. I emphasized all the distinctions through studio processing. It would make no sense to describe them with words. Just listen. - Anton Batagov
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on December 13, 2017, 12:04:32 PM
Robert Hill, Bull on a meantone tuned harpsichord with 19 notes in an octave

https://www.youtube.com/v/hpDkbRpxwKw

It's the sort of thing that makes me think that "normal" ways of playing 16th century music are still heavily tainted by 19th and 18th  century presuppositions about enharmonics and tuning. The situation may be like the way medieval music used to be sung before Michael Morrow etc. What Hill does makes the music sound as strange as . . . a song by Solage.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on December 13, 2017, 12:30:27 PM

Quote
The criticism of Savall that his Tye is "d’une beauté parfois un rien trop hiératique." is interesting given the new Archeron Gibbons. Maybe viol music is religious after all, in some sense. In truth I have no idea what's idiomatic and what isn't in English music.

Neither does Savall.....  8)

Q

I don't think anyone really, truly, does, i.e., know what early music sounded like during those times.  Which is why Richard Taruskin wrote at least one book on how our realizations of early music are a quintessential example of modernism.  Taruskin argues that when we perform early music, we are playing the music according to our modern tastes, and not according to some sense of what is authentic (a word which isn't used much anymore among early music musicians); because we don't and cannot ever know what is really, truly, authentic for these periods.

So, more power to Savall, I say.   :)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on December 13, 2017, 09:25:38 PM

I don't think anyone really, truly, does, i.e., know what early music sounded like during those times.  Which is why Richard Taruskin wrote at least one book on how our realizations of early music are a quintessential example of modernism.  Taruskin argues that when we perform early music, we are playing the music according to our modern tastes, and not according to some sense of what is authentic (a word which isn't used much anymore among early music musicians); because we don't and cannot ever know what is really, truly, authentic for these periods.

So, more power to Savall, I say.   :)

Well, we know something - even if only a little. When this we know is taken into account in performance we call the performance informed, The word authentic is more tricky, But we can say with certainty, that a performance of, say the AoF by a saxophone quartet is inauthentic as to important elements, and generally we know more about what is inauthentic than about what is authentic. But there is a tendency to justify all possible inauthentic interpretations with the claim, that we don't know anything at all about what is authentic.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on December 14, 2017, 02:15:55 AM
Well, we know something - even if only a little. When this we know is taken into account in performance we call the performance informed, The word authentic is more tricky, But we can say with certainty, that a performance of, say the AoF by a saxophone quartet is inauthentic as to important elements, and generally we know more about what is inauthentic than about what is authentic. But there is a tendency to justify all possible inauthentic interpretations with the claim, that we don't know anything at all about what is authentic.

Yes, but my general point was regarding the relative authenticity of Jordi Savall's performances.  He does not lead a saxophone quartet.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 23, 2018, 11:08:49 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/718qb5m4jPL._SX522_.jpg)

I think this recording of Tye's music from Phantasm has exceptional sound, I don't just mean the sound engineering, I mean the blended harmonious sound they make when they play together.

To give an example of what they do, in Sit Fast, Phantasm take it quite fast. This, combined with the blended sound and the sweet harmonies, make parts of it sound rather modern, like Michael Nyman or Philip Glass. This is silly of course, but it's what I felt. In the in nomine "death" or "my death" or "death bedde" they also take it fast, if it is about death, it's a jolly dance to the grave - very different in conception from Savall and Spirit of Gambo. I have no idea why it's called "death" by the way, and even if it's about death it could be cheerful (ich habe genüg), so that's not meant as any sort of negative criticism. A similar story for the in nomine "blameless"

So a tentative preliminary picture  is taking shape, Phantasm's Tye is more lively,more sunny, more blended and less astringent in the harmony department than previous versions.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 06, 2018, 10:58:49 AM
(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_300/666283113624.jpg?1436274541)



I played the Pavans and Galiards on Charlston's Byrd CD last night, I like it, I especially like the sound of his harpsichord, the supple rhythms, the way he doesn't pound the pulse out.

The CD arrived today, I'd previously been listening on spotify, and the notes confirmed my suspicion that the instruments are tuned 1/4 comma meantone -- what a difference it makes! This is a very satisfying Byrd harpsichord recording.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 08, 2018, 09:00:14 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51yPjRHoQPL._SX355_.jpg)

There's something a bit dated about this recording. Payne's unnuanced touch, with all that that means for lack variety in the colour and texture and attack of the music;  his tendency to move the music forward in big phrases. These are things which make me think more of people like Scott Ross and indeed Payne's teacher Wanda Landowska than the sophisticated sensitive playing we've come to expect from contemporary harpsichordists. Listening to it makes you realise how much harpsichord playing has come on - if someone played like this today no one would give them a contract or even a degree.

But there are some important positive things to be said this recording. First, the mere fact that Payne had the vision to collect together so many (all?) of Bull's Pavans and Galliards is in itself revealing, just as is Moroney's Harmonia Mundi Byrd. It reveals that Bull as much as Byrd made an interesting exploration of this form - one of the major keyboard forms. And second, I've found a way of enjoying the almost naive frankness and enthusiasm of Payne's music making, just as I  found a way of enjoying Tilney's Scarlatti. His style in fact seems to suit the harpsichord, which, although it avoids sounding crude, is certainly not an elegant or refined or delicate instrument. Let's say that it touches the crude, a dance hall harpsichord.

So while I sense that this music can be better played, I'm  not sure anyone has succeeded in doing more to make me aware of its importance than Joseph Payne. Indeed,, I'm not sure anyone has been more successful with it on record - Hantaï maybe recorded some of them, maybe Leonhardt recorded one or two, I'll have to check.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on May 08, 2018, 10:41:01 AM
I believe I shared my admiration before of this set by Peter Watchorn and Mahan Esfahani:



Stephen Midgley wrote on Amazon an interesting comparative review.

Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 08, 2018, 11:22:49 AM
The one I listen to most, que, is Bob van Asperen's, I forgot that he included a pavan and galliard, we're in a different world from Payne of course.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51xKdvuKfwL._SY355_.jpg)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 16, 2018, 08:32:06 PM
https://www.youtube.com/v/_UuZP-2Bvs8

Pierre Hantai plays Byrd
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mr. Minnow on May 17, 2018, 05:34:43 AM
Anyone heard this?

(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0004/370/MI0004370912.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

I assume it's a new recording and not a reissue of this:

(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/064/MI0001064506.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 24, 2018, 09:27:01 PM
(https://www.hbdirect.com/coverm/thumbnails/691062051828.pt01.jpg)


This is Richard Egarr's new recording dedicated to Byrd's music for keyboard, in the event he chooses to use a harpsichord for all of the pieces. A Dutch style harpsichord, "after" a Ruckers,  tuned 1/4 comma meantone.

Egarr's Byrd is dramatic and tense. Rhythmically Egarr uses constant ornamentation which serves to make the firm pulse of the music more fluid. The performances are very rich in diverse affects. Egarr brings something new to the game: he makes music which is challenging: complex, gnarly, grotesque and theatrical.

The recording is  listenable but slightly too reverberant, you sense that the engineering doesn't do justice to Egarr's subtle and nuanced tone and touch. The performances are a stimulating contribution to Byrd reception on record.
Title: Re:Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 24, 2018, 10:02:23 PM
Anyone heard this?


I assume it's a new recording and not a reissue

No not a reissue.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mr. Minnow on May 25, 2018, 03:36:18 PM
No not a reissue.

Thanks - just ordered it. Hopefully it's as good as his previous Byrd CD.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on May 25, 2018, 04:50:09 PM
Anyone heard this?

(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0004/370/MI0004370912.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

I assume it's a new recording and not a reissue of this:

(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/064/MI0001064506.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)
How does this old cembalo sound? Juicy?
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 26, 2018, 08:49:39 AM
How does this old cembalo sound? Juicy?

The 2017 CD is well recorded, two instruments, a virginal and a harpsichord, both beautiful and colourful. .  I very much like the dreamy and lyrical quality of the pavans on virginal, siren song. Anyway I think this is an essential thing to hear.  Listen for yourself

https://www.youtube.com/v/6yI2cdo6MFU

Thanks - just ordered it. Hopefully it's as good as his previous Byrd CD.

Yes, I think it is.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 26, 2018, 11:03:38 PM
The 2017 CD is well recorded, two instruments, a virginal and a harpsichord, both beautiful and colourful. .  I very much like the dreamy and lyrical quality of the pavans on virginal, siren song. Anyway I think this is an essential thing to hear.  Listen for yourself

https://www.youtube.com/v/6yI2cdo6MFU

Yes, I think it is.

Having said that, I think that Egarr's recording is probably the most interesting and valuable of the recent Byrd releases.

I just listened to Egarr playing the C major fantasy, and what he does is really astonishing, original and poetic.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 27, 2018, 10:11:46 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71wvSw3-i1L._SX466_.jpg)


Ewa Rzetecka-Niewiadomska plays the Purcell suites in a very serious, reflective, refined way, full of affects, the booklet mentions the French character of these works, and I suspect that that's where she's coming from. Nice French harpsichord, a copy (rather than "after") of Taskin 1769. Interesting to contrast her approach with Egarr's, who's kind of the polar opposite. I find myself enjoying the way she plays very much.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 09, 2018, 09:19:32 AM
(https://direct.rhapsody.com/imageserver/images/Alb.118248917/500x500.jpg)

Very recommendable Peter Philips recording here from Colin Booth, not least for the harpsichord -- Italian, anonymous, organ like in its sustain, independent 4' stop on a separate keyboard, meantone tuned. Booth is well able to drive the instrument and to interpret the music imaginatively and tastefully.

This is one of those occasions where the transfer on spotify doesn't do justice to the recording on CD at all, unfortunately. And in a thing like this, where the instrument matters a lot to the artistry, it's rather unfortunate. On CD the sound is very impressive and has an immediate impact, too close really and probably not what the instrument really sounds like from the audience perspective, but nevertheless very seductive and sensual to hear.

Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: (: premont :) on June 09, 2018, 10:55:19 AM
Ooh, my poor wallet.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 10, 2018, 11:47:02 AM
This is also well worth hearing I think

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/61Aji7Or7pL._SX355_.jpg)

I didn’t know he was a harpsichord maker! He clearly chooses instruments carefully and makes sure they’re well recorded. It looks like the label, Soundboard, is his.

If you go to his website you’ll see he’s got a 3-for-2 sale of his own CDs, Immhoing to order the Byrd and the Frescobaldi, and possibly the Purcell or Buxtehude. The Louis Couperin is also well worth hearing.

http://www.colinbooth.co.uk/recordings.html
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 12, 2018, 07:59:14 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51wMOUgHZ7L.jpg)

Anneke Uittenbosch was a student of Gustav Leonhardt and on this Peter Philips recording she manifests a similar sense of seriousness and expressive control. She has a knack for doing what people used to say Klemperer did, she gives the music a coherent palpable architecture, so that transitions seem natural, dénouements seem inevitable, endings sound final. The readings are very imaginative, in that we find a Philips much more meditative than elsewhere. Her performances are profound, in that they dig into the music inner voices, so that the textures are contrapuntally complex, she makes the music work more through this counterpoint rather than through lyricism. The final pieces, the Passamezzo Pavan and Galliard and the F major fantasie are real high points of Philips on record, if not English renaissance keyboard on record. The Galiard is especially impressive.

Maybe we have something really revealing in her interpretations because it makes Philips sound very close in style  to Sweelinck. I mean I know that Sweelinck liked and used some of Philips tunes, but with Uittenbosch you can hear that the influence goes further - and has much to do with counterpoint.   

Uittenbosch is my sort of musician.

But I have a slight personal reservation. She uses two instruments, and one of them is a modern copy of a Flemish harpsichord “à grand ravalement” and I’m not so keen on its very rich sound. Having said that, it is colourful and saves some of the music from slipping into over-austerity.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 18, 2018, 12:54:46 AM
Any recommendations for the recordings of the harpsichord music by Henry Purcell?  :)

Q

Well strangely there’s a new release which I think you should get, since you obviously won’t touch Egarr with a barge poll. This

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71wvSw3-i1L._SX522_.jpg)

I’ve lived with it for about three weeks now and each time I go back to it I’m more and more impressed. And this is in music which normally I find rapidly tires me.

The aesthetic principle underlying the performance is well explained in this excerpt from the booklet essay by Witold Paprocki

Quote
The type of rhythmical melody that Purcell employs in his suites lays the foundation for introducing French notes inégales (non-equal notes), whose punctuated figures give the dances charm and refined expression. In some sections, mainly in the almand and saraband, Purcell himself shapes the rhythm in the spirit of notes inégales, confirming it in the musical notation. He is also keen to introduce the effect of a sort of instability, of undermining the pulse with the sequential exchange of sounds and note values between the two parts (eg. the Almand in Suite No. 6).

The binary structure of almost all the movements of the suites (excluding several Preludes) gives performers ample opportunity to enrich the ornamentation in the repetitions or to change the timbre by employing a different register of the instrument. Present-day harpsichord- ists eagerly make use of this opportunity, if only because the short duration of the pieces makes it rather unlikely that they will ignore the repeats.

The expressive bass, which is the foundation on which Purcell develops his refined harmonies, as well as the firm melodic writing in the themes, evokes associations with the Italian style. In fact, it may be said that the themes in the Third and Fifth Suites anticipate, in this particular aspect, the onset of the style of Vivaldi or Bach.

Taken as a whole, Purcell’s harpsichord suites appear to be typical Baroque examples of the harmonious juxtaposition of contradictions, of using multi-coloured timbres and striking the strings with subtly diversified affections. Suite No. 7 in D minor, for instance, opens with a melancholy Almand in lute style which introduces listeners to an aura of introverted reverie. It is followed by an energetic Corant, leading to the Hornpipe, with its carnivalesque impetuosity, an invitation to this stamping dance.

The entire collection is brought to an end with the simple, elegant Minuet of Suite No. 8. This 16-bar miniature may be described as the com- poser’s closing gesture, an expression of gratitude to both the performer and listener which under- lines the fact that charm and simplicity may go hand in hand even in the Baroque period, when to lure and captivate listeners was the order of the day.

You see that it completely confounds my assertion made elsewhere that there’s no irony in Purcell, and the idea is really present in the performances. Furthermore, I’d say that what Ewa Rzetecka-Niewiadomska does with expression make these suites as ravishing as anything by Chambonnières.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 30, 2018, 12:57:29 AM
Interesting live Purcell suite here from Matteo Messori

https://www.youtube.com/v/dNPSRtQS7mM
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 30, 2018, 03:35:39 AM
https://youtube.com/v/KRbKMqZyfq0

This is Colin Tilney’s Byrd for Reflexe. It has an amazing quadran Pavan and galliard, infinitely more interesting to hear than his effort on The Contrapuntal Byrd.

Does anyone have this on CD? If so, I’d love an upload, the CD is very expensive to buy.      Got it!
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on July 11, 2018, 01:46:01 PM
(http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/dec99/byrd2.jpg)
I'd like to put in a plug for this ol' one. I love the variety of instruments here: organ, harpsichord, virginal, clavichord..."The Bells" is mesmerizing.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on July 22, 2018, 04:50:00 PM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/172/MI0001172909.jpg?partner=allrovi.com) more piano attempts at early music. I’m giving this a go. I know I should probably get a good HIP performance first.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on July 22, 2018, 08:54:06 PM
(http://www.musicweb-international.com/classrev/dec99/byrd2.jpg)
I'd like to put in a plug for this ol' one. I love the variety of instruments here: organ, harpsichord, virginal, clavichord..."The Bells" is mesmerizing.

A wonderful set!  :)

I know I should probably get a good HIP performance first.

I like Hogwood:


Q
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on July 23, 2018, 01:25:38 AM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/172/MI0001172909.jpg?partner=allrovi.com) more piano attempts at early music. I’m giving this a go. I know I should probably get a good HIP performance first.

Have you heard this?

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/91GIY3Cv9BL._SX355_.jpg)

Richard Egarr recorded some Gibbons for the same label as his Louis Couperin. I have a rather good transfer of the Hogwood, better than the commercial transfer though with a bit of LP noise - I can always let you have it if you want. I like Daniel-Ben Pienaar’s performances very much. Gibbons’s instrumental music is I think, hard to get off the page.


Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on July 23, 2018, 03:26:01 AM
A wonderful set!  :)

I like Hogwood:


Q
I’m really enjoying the Hogwood.
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 09, 2018, 09:26:39 PM
The 2017 CD is well recorded, two instruments, a virginal and a harpsichord, both beautiful and colourful. .  I very much like the dreamy and lyrical quality of the pavans on virginal, siren song. Anyway I think this is an essential thing to hear.  Listen for yourself

https://www.youtube.com/v/6yI2cdo6MFU

Yes, I think it is.

The dreamy and lyrical quality  has not worn well with me, I don’t think it’s a good way to play Byrd. A bit of a disappointment, this CD.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 30, 2018, 08:57:45 AM
(http://www.phantasm.org.uk/sites/phantasm.org.uk/files/styles/medium/public/cdcovers/Locke%20CD%20cover%202018.png?itok=6X_1XCGr)

Phantasm play Matthew Locke, a brand new release. For those who know Phantasm, and their tendency for incisive articulation rather than fluidity and lyricism, will get what they’re expecting from this recording. It’s fascating to compare what the do with Locke with Fretwork and Savall.

The question which I’m trying to think about, so far with no clear success, is how well this style brings out the best in relatively late, Italianate, almost Frescabaldian music like Locke’s.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on October 30, 2018, 10:32:51 AM
(http://www.phantasm.org.uk/sites/phantasm.org.uk/files/styles/medium/public/cdcovers/Locke%20CD%20cover%202018.png?itok=6X_1XCGr)

Phantasm play Matthew Locke, a brand new release. For those who know Phantasm, and their tendency for incisive articulation rather than fluidity and lyricism, will get what they’re expecting from this recording. It’s fascating to compare what the do with Locke with Fretwork and Savall.

The question which I’m trying to think about, so far with no clear success, is how well this style brings out the best in relatively late, Italianate, almost Frescabaldian music like Locke’s.

I'm a Fretwork fan....  :)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on October 30, 2018, 10:57:52 AM
I'm a Fretwork fan....  :)

I've been listening to their second Purcell recording -- it's really very good. On the whole I think Fretwork are outstanding in this later Italianate music.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on November 17, 2018, 11:32:05 AM
(https://img.discogs.com/DQpj9HR-44ipnlwxy7WaOUvCt8A=/fit-in/600x594/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-6861460-1432951438-4386.jpeg.jpg)

A rather good Lawes CD from Anthony Rooley here, warmly recorded, sober, Lawes is for me a very challenging composer but The Consort of Musicke have found the right groove IMO
Title: Re: English Renaissance and Baroque Instrumental Music
Post by: milk on November 21, 2018, 04:44:29 AM
Have you heard this?

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/91GIY3Cv9BL._SX355_.jpg)

Richard Egarr recorded some Gibbons for the same label as his Louis Couperin. I have a rather good transfer of the Hogwood, better than the commercial transfer though with a bit of LP noise - I can always let you have it if you want. I like Daniel-Ben Pienaar’s performances very much. Gibbons’s instrumental music is I think, hard to get off the page.
I had missed your post. I did acquire the Hogwood. Thanks for the offer. It's very is enjoyable.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on December 14, 2018, 08:29:04 AM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/029/MI0001029790.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)         (https://linn01.prod.sidonia.be/sites/linn01.prod.sidonia.be/files/styles/square_400/public/album_cover/CKD%20594_cover%20gold%20logo_3000x3000.jpg?itok=YS4IF6V_)

Quote from: Gio here https://www.amazon.co.uk/Locke-Consort-Fower-Parts-Fretwork/dp/B000005GGT/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1544802286&sr=8-1&keywords=fretwork+locke
. . . but the general mood of the music is more philosophical than lusty.

This comment is from a customer review for the Fretwork CD on amazon. And he's right, and it pinpoints one essential difference between between their conception of Locke, or maybe of all Italianate late baroque music, and that of Phantasm. Which is more stylish I cannot say. But I can say that I find the suppleness and smoothness of Fretwork's approach rather beguiling. Phantasm, with a more sharp edged articulation and a less sweet, harder tone, are more demanding and less relaxing certainly. Does that make them more modern?

Also, it may or may not be relevant to point out that  Markku Luolajan-Mikkola, now on this latest Locke CD with Phantasm, recorded Jenkins and possibly other things with Fretwork. As far as I know, the leak is one way: Phantasm has lost no personnel to Fretwork.

This is, in fact, Phantasm's second Locke recording, as if proof were needed of their commitment to making sense of the composer's music.  Can someone let me have the first so I can hear the evolution?

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51ivVWOnXxL.jpg)

Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on December 17, 2018, 01:02:51 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/511OoiWqhbL._SY355_.jpg)

Bernard Klapprott plays Thomas Tomkins variations on Fortune my Foe. This was Tomkins final work, and a magnum opus, yet there are only two recordings I think - this and Carol Cerasi.

I didn't get much joy from either Cerasi or  Klapprott, but here's a promising one by the imaginative Gerard van Reenen, whose Pachelbel was more than interesting


https://www.youtube.com/v/upbI2HUoigQ

He writes


Quote
Byrd, Gibbons, Morley, Bull, Farnaby and others . . .  wrote their pieces for the virginals, but we may interpret this as for all keyboard instruments (virginal, harpsichord, organ, regals, clavichord). The harmonium did not exist during that time, but I dare to play this piece on that instrument. I play with an "old" interpretation and I have tuned my harmonium in mean-tone temperament.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on December 17, 2018, 01:08:29 AM
And here's the same performer on a harpsichord with Barafostus's Dream, which has probably fared rather better on record than the above variations because of Leonhardt's recording.

https://www.youtube.com/v/dDTD9s0OiQo
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on January 24, 2019, 12:34:17 AM

This is, in fact, Phantasm's second Locke recording, as if proof were needed of their commitment to making sense of the composer's music.

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51ivVWOnXxL.jpg)

This is played less for thrill, less vigorously, more peacefully and lyrically than their later recording, to me they feel very much at ease with themselves and the music, relaxed about playing it. I haven't checked but maybe the line up was different, maturer, in the first recording.  The sound of the ensemble is more sinewy in the later recording, the harmonies more interestingly crunchy, which suites their wired interpretation.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 18, 2019, 10:47:22 PM
(http://www.apesound.de/out/pictures/generated/product/2/540_340_75/64882_Product.jpg)

The first thing to say is that the harpsichord sounds beautiful and is well recorded. Timothy Roberts knows how to play it - he can make lots of different colours and attacks. His style is sobre, authoritative and classical, I mean that there’s a sense of control, confidence and poise - like the control, confidence and poise of the archetypical English gentleman in fact, Steady Steed. Tempo is well judged and natural.  You could, I think, say that Roberts is didactic almost - as if he’s demonstrating to his listeners how the music unfolds, showing us the music’s structure. But the quality of his playing, his good judgement and indeed the quality of the music stopped me from reproaching him his bloodlessness, stopped me from imagining that the music was being telephoned in from afar, and stopped me from ever thinking I was back at school.

Timothy Roberts is the same sort of ilk as Richard Lester.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on February 18, 2019, 11:00:09 PM
(http://www.apesound.de/out/pictures/generated/product/2/540_340_75/64882_Product.jpg)

The first thing to say is that the harpsichord sounds beautiful and is well recorded. Timothy Roberts knows how to play it - he can make lots of different colours and attacks. His style is sobre, authoritative and classical, I mean that there’s a sense of control, confidence and poise - like the control, confidence and poise of the archetypical English gentleman in fact, Steady Steed. Tempo is well judged and natural.  You could, I think, say that Roberts is didactic almost - as if he’s demonstrating to his listeners how the music unfolds, showing us the music’s structure. But the quality of his playing, his good judgement and indeed the quality of the music stopped me from reproaching him his bloodlessness, stopped me from imagining that the music was being telephoned in from afar, and stopped me from ever thinking I was back at school.

Timothy Roberts is the same sort of ilk as Richard Lester.

I'm very fond of that recording - one of my favourites in English harpsichord.

Q
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: JCBuckley on February 19, 2019, 06:36:21 AM
I'm very fond of that recording - one of my favourites in English harpsichord.

Q

+ 1
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 23, 2019, 06:47:28 AM
(https://i.ibb.co/M1B48Rn/Farnaby-s-Dream-Cover.jpg)

A  contrasting view of Farnaby here. Hantai gives it colour, swagger and bite. I think this was the first thing that Hantai recorded, and IMO is possibly THE most important harpsichord release of the past 50 years, heralding the free, fluid and virtuosic style which Hantai and Glen Wilson subsequently explored in other music.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 27, 2019, 02:29:45 PM
(https://direct.rhapsody.com/imageserver/images/Alb.310405377/500x500.jpg)

The organ at Saint-Thomas de Cantorbéry in Mont Saint Aignan is 17th century originally, reconstructed back to how it was then, meantone,  details here

http://www.lesmeslanges.org/documents/orgue.pdf

I knew Thilo Muster before through a Guilan CD, this Bull recording was released last year. Very incisive playing, attractive and imaginative registrations I’d say, sometimes the pulse is unyielding, maybe hard to avoid in this music, and anyway what he does full of life and even ecstatic / hypnotic at times, in some of the big pieces, fantasias and in nomines, he’s very good at making the transitions flow naturally.

Here’s the organist’s website

http://thilomuster.info/bio-2/

Fabulous sound.

This is worth hearing I think.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on February 27, 2019, 10:39:50 PM
(https://direct.rhapsody.com/imageserver/images/Alb.310405377/500x500.jpg)

The organ at Saint-Thomas de Cantorbéry in Mont Saint Aignan is 17th century originally, reconstructed back to how it was then, meantone,  details here

http://www.lesmeslanges.org/documents/orgue.pdf

I knew Thilo Muster before through a Guilan CD, this Bull recording was released last year. Very incisive playing, attractive and imaginative registrations I’d say, sometimes the pulse is unyielding, maybe hard to avoid in this music, and anyway what he does full of life and even ecstatic / hypnotic at times, in some of the big pieces, fantasias and in nomines, he’s very good at making the transitions flow naturally.

Here’s the organist’s website

http://thilomuster.info/bio-2/

Fabulous sound.

This is worth hearing I think.

I'm more generous in my judgement: a superb performance and, considering the special organ, a unique recording!  :)

Not that really matters...but the recording was (originally) issued in 2012 - I got my copy over three years ago.

Q
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on February 28, 2019, 12:13:33 AM
Thanks Q, I only found out about it last week and saw 2018, that must have referred to it’s transfer to a stream.

(https://static.qobuz.com/images/covers/72/33/0747313243372_600.jpg)  (https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71BIHFwh5yL._SY355_.jpg)

Two harpsichord only CDs pretty well devoted to fantasias by Byrd and  Farnaby. Fantasia here denotes a genre in which simple variation and imitation of a motif gradually accelerates, and in the end, the density and rapidity of notes is so intense that the formal rails are transcended, like an aeroplane taking flight, slowly on the runway and then faster and faster . . . .

A whole CD of this sort of music may sound a bit academic and off putting, but it has the potential to be like an Art of the Fugue avant la lettre. 

Wilson has an impressive bravura technique, something which here may well be a sine qua non. He can show imagination in the way he embelishes the music with rubato and with ornaments. He has a wonderful Hantaï like capacity for making packets of notes leap out, like discharges of static electricity from a Van Der Graaf generator. Moreover he doesn’t shrink from underlining asperities and dissonances. He never loses the thread in what is very complex music.

Wilson has a tendency to pound, as if he’s got his boots on the keyboard. For both Byrd and for Farnaby, he chose to use a copy of a Ruckers harpsichord, with the typical rich tones of a Dutch instrument. I wonder if this sense of heavy handedness is a consequence of his choice of instrument - he may have been better off with a virginal, an Italian harpsichord or an organ.

The sound is fine, particularly in the Byrd.

Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 08, 2019, 11:04:10 PM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/117/MI0001117359.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

An astonishing organ rendition of Bull’s Ut re mi fa sol la (God save the king) here, somehow Rampe makes it sound like a Shostakovich scherzo, with a repeating motif like a battering ram. He takes it fast on an organ.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on March 11, 2019, 12:23:47 AM
(https://f4.bcbits.com/img/a0718010305_10.jpg)

William Cranford. (fl. 1613-1621) was long dead when Henry Purcell was born (Purcell:1659– 1695) Nevertheless his sequence of viol fantasias are every bit as contrapuntally and textually interesting as Purcell's -- I wouldn't be surprised to learn that Purcell was paying homage to him when he wrote them.

The notes in the recording by Le Strange Viols say that

Quote
Perhaps because Cranford’s musical style
is so idiomatic to a particularly insular vein of
Stuart consort music, it has not yet found the
popularity among modern listeners enjoyed by
the brash and flamboyant William Lawes or the
incredibly prolific and cultivated John Jenkins.
Gordon Dodd’s characterization of Cranford’s
music as “pointilliste” and “mechanical” has
managed to cast a shadow, perhaps, across
Cranford’s evident enjoyment of unique textures
and droll sequences of close imitation. Cranford’s
fantasias reveal an astonishing breadth of internal
contrasts and subtle use of an often strikingly
modern-sounding harmonic palette, such as his
conspicuous use of modal mixture in the opening
of the fourth fantasia a4. His consort music is also
quite technically demanding, requiring frequent
forays above the frets in the treble parts and the
nimble execution of tricky divisions in the close
quarters of dense ensemble textures

For my part I much prefer his consort music to the so called "brash and flamboyant William Lawes" (I wish Lawes were a bit more brash and flamboyant in fact.) The booklet essay by Lauren Ludwig is spot on I'd say when she comments on

Quote
. . .  Cranford’s evident enjoyment of unique textures
and droll sequences of close imitation. Cranford’s
fantasias reveal an astonishing breadth of internal contrasts and subtle use of an often strikingly
modern-sounding harmonic palette. . .

as was a gentleman of the C 17, Dudley North, who praised Cranford's music for its

Quote
gravity,
majesty, honey-dew spirit, and variety


The Le Strange consort, New York musicians, are well able to play the music and they have a good set of instruments. For me this recording is a major discovery -- in fact I may end up preferring the sequence to Purcell's!
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on April 02, 2019, 10:47:26 PM
(http://www.arkivmusic.com/graphics/covers/full/32/325918.JPG)

Jamie Johnstone plays Gibbons. One thing which caught my attention about this is that he uses a harpsichord for some pieces and a virginal for others. There's much more relief in his harpsichord pieces, with the voices intersecting, the virginal pieces make a more flat texture.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 04, 2019, 07:52:18 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/511OoiWqhbL._SY450_.jpg)

Bernard Klapprott has recently become a much more familiar name to people who are interested in C17 keyboard music because he released an Art of Fugue with Bob van Asperen, where he is present in 4 of the 19 pieces. He's here  in much earlier music, the first volume of his complete survey of keyboard music by Thomas Tomkins.

In fact, mentioning Art of Fugue may not be incidental, because Klapprott's vision makes the contrapuntal nature of Tomkins's music really central -- that more than lyricism or colour. We have hear a Tomkins whose music is, in some sense, in the same genre as Bach's counterpoint.

Whereas Asperen and Klapprott chose to systematically embellish their Bach with trills, Klopprott systematically embellishes his Tomkins with agogic hesitations. They aren't intrusive, on the contrary they are a subtle, organic and effective way of creating a pulse -- as a strategy I think it's much more satisfactory than the ornaments in their Bach.

Klapprott was a pupil of Asperen's and you can I think tell, because there's a similar sense of fantasy in polyphony. This comes out very well in the famous Barafostus.

There's a sense here of an uncompromising investigation of the music, without any sense of superficiality. He uses on this volume a harpsichord and a virginal both tuned in some sort of meantone way. Well recorded. A great joy to rediscover, a rediscovery which has made me value Tomkins much more than I had done before. What a shame there is such a paucity of his music on record.



Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 05, 2019, 03:02:07 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/511d6c-O-qL._SX425_.jpg)

This recording of Purcell sonatas has caught my imagination more than any other I’ve heard - luminous sound and full of emotional contrasts. Normally I’ve dismissed Purcell sonatas as a bit trivial but these performances show that they can be made interesting to hear.

By the way I came across Les Nièces de Rameau because I stumbled across this unexpected  recording of transcriptions of English music made by Les Inattendus, and one of the Les Nièces de Rameau’s members is Marianne Müller, a pupil of Wieland Kuijken

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71HmboepcRL._SX569_.jpg)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 06, 2019, 09:47:12 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71VRD0YeSdL._SX522_.jpg)

It’s very good to have all these five part fantasias collected together like this, Spirit of Gambo are clearly committed to Jenkins like no other consort. It has only just been released and so I’ve just begun to listen. But my initial reaction is slightly mitigated by a nagging doubt - that their interpretations are too fluid and too lyrical. In short, that the performances are under-articulated. The result may sometimes come close to the thing which must be avoided in polyphonic music like this at all costs - an interwoven hotchpotch.

This seems rather different from what they did on their recording of four part fantasias, and of course the sound is different too, thicker in the five part music of course, but also I’d say less strongly underpinned by the bass viol. This could be partly due to the engineering - there seems to me to be more air between the musicians in the four part recording

(http://c3.cduniverse.ws/resized/250x500/music/385/9391385.jpg)

Of course the music is different. Four the five part music we read

Quote
In view of the range of expression and colour in these fantasias, it is extraor- dinary that only three tonics (G, D and C) are used.

while for the four part music we read

Quote
What is most striking about these fantasias is the succession of keys, not only from one piece to another, but within individual pieces. Unlike in earlier centuries, distant tonalities are not considered as foreign regions, but as territories that one may cross before returning safely home.

a comment which is followed up by a tantalising (for me) remark on enharmonics

Quote
Enharmonic modulations – frequent in the music of the romantic period – give his music a timeless aspect. There appears to be little change going on, and yet the harmony is altering radically. In the harmonic complexity of his writing, Jenkins to a large extent prepared the way for his successor Henry Purcell.

Anyway it’s probably not right to post these very preliminary reactions because I’m almost bound to change my mind. But I thought I’d state them in case anyone else felt like listening to see if they feel the same way  p
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 07, 2019, 06:39:42 AM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/005/MI0001005011.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

This disc is triply valuable. First it is as far as I know the only commercial recording with substantial amounts of music played at Uttum. Second it is the only organ recording as far as I know with substantial amounts of music by Thomas Tomkins. Third it benefits from Bernard Klapprott's seriousness and penchant for contrapuntal music.

Klapprott has chosen the pieces carefully, the criterion I most appreciate is that the music here seems to have a singing quality, something which befits the Uttum organ very well. The tangy harmonies of some of the pieces, for example the In Nomine 8 and the piece No.68 (without title), is no doubt partly due to the way the Uttum instrument is tuned.

Klapprott's tendency for sobriety does not prevent him from finding nobility and indeed extroversion when he feels fit, for example in the wonderful Clarifica Me.

One piece I find particularly moving is the "Short verse for Edward Thornburgh."  Thornburgh was executed for his religious beliefs and Tomkins created a musical memorial for him in the form of a pavan. Klapprott follows this with a pair of  pieces  on a related theme, which make for an effective coda. The three are followed by the well known offertory, and that programming seems to work really well to me.

The booklet essay is exemplary, with scholarly and accessible discussions of the music, the Uttum organ and the nature of the English organ in Tomkins's time.

Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 13, 2019, 11:29:43 AM
(https://img.discogs.com/Iavzqv3mXU-TWU8JnAUQUqbeAPE=/fit-in/600x532/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-12659002-1539513989-6925.jpeg.jpg)

The first thing to say here is not about viol, but rather about voice. You can't generalise about voice, less so than other instruments, what one person likes another loathes. Emma Kirkby here  is very much what I'm looking for from a singer. Such a shame she doesn't feature more on the CD.

Pandolfo plays more conventionally here than in later recordings, and he makes the viol sing rather than mumble. 

The essential thing about Tobias Hume's music IMO is that it sounds unfathomable, ambiguous, obscure. Pandolfo and his mates understand this well. And they do it in a way which is sometimes exuberant and sometimes melancholy and always engaged sounding and imaginative.

Sound quality is excellent.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: San Antone on May 13, 2019, 11:39:43 AM
(https://img.discogs.com/Iavzqv3mXU-TWU8JnAUQUqbeAPE=/fit-in/600x532/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-12659002-1539513989-6925.jpeg.jpg)

The first thing to say here is not about viol, but rather about voice. You can't generalise about voice, less so than other instruments, what one person likes another loathes. Emma Kirkby here  is very much what I'm looking for from a singer. Such a shame she doesn't feature more on the CD.

Pandolfo plays more conventionally here than in later recordings, and he makes the viol sing rather than mumble. 

The essential thing about Tobias Hume's music IMO is that it sounds unfathomable, ambiguous, obscure. Pandolfo and his mates understand this well. And they do it in a way which is sometimes exuberant and sometimes melancholy and always engaged sounding and imaginative.

Sound quality is excellent.

Have you heard this Emma Kirkby recording from 2017?

(https://bis.se/shop/17115/art15/h0597/5010597-origpic-c34772.jpg)

I am unsure if it is a compilation from older recordings or new performances, but it is a nice selection of songs with viols.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 14, 2019, 04:27:36 AM
Have you heard this Emma Kirkby recording from 2017?

(https://bis.se/shop/17115/art15/h0597/5010597-origpic-c34772.jpg)

I am unsure if it is a compilation from older recordings or new performances, but it is a nice selection of songs with viols.

No I haven't but I will do. I've started to listen to this, unknown musicians but committed playing and not at all uninteresting.

(https://m.media-amazon.com/images/I/918j2ePgJ8L._SS500_.jpg)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 17, 2019, 12:07:31 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/718dnxQckTL._SL1098_.jpg)

This is special. I mean something like, my life is richer for knowing it, significantly so. It's just so full of personality: First we have the unique way the Rose Consort play together, create harmonies together, and their beguiling introverted cantabile. Next, this is the most astonishing aspect of the recording really, the extraordinary vowels of Red Byrd -- they've found a way of singing Renaissance music which doesn't make it sound like Haendel!  I hope that's accessible to people whose native language isn't British English, because I can assure you that the way, for example, he sings "and verily"in O Lord, Let me know mine end, an accent like I remember hearing in Leicester, just transforms the music. Timothy Roberts is a keyboard player who grows in my estimation each time I hear him, and exactly the same could be said of Thomas Tomkins's music. Very well engineered sound.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on May 19, 2019, 04:13:58 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41CPYT0AFNL.jpg)

This recording exemplifies a familiar phenomenon.

It is well made; nicely packaged; the  sound is more than fine; the  programme is good, with lots of variety, professionally performed and in fact performed with gusto,;  the singers are all outstanding, some of them, like Charles Daniels and Emma Kirkby, are great favourites of mine; Fretwork is never less than professional.

If it were a concert you wouldn’t be sorry to have made the effort to go, and you’d give them a round of applause at the end.

What’s not to like?

I’ll tell you what’s not to like. It lacks fantasy, reverie. I only know this because Rose Consort and Red Byrd have it in spades in their Tomkins CD, so they’ve rather raised the bar.

Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on June 26, 2019, 09:59:11 PM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/51B2KN7vnUL._SY355_.jpg)

I know of no more satisfying selection from The Fitzwilliam Virginal Book than this old recording for Koopman - who plays with refinement and  flexibility, he makes each twist and turn of each piece a feel surprising and the whole sound full of creative fantasy. Koopman seems to transmit a sense joy, light hearted joy, and discovery.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 15, 2019, 03:23:26 AM
(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_900/850869006213.jpg?1513763156)

Noone can beat The Rose Consort for learned counterpoint, and that's what we have hear from Richard Dering, whose instrumental music is new to me. It contains half a dozen tracks by him, mostly for viol consort. Peter Philips' keyboard music is very familiar, but less so in viol consort. So this CD is doubly valuable. The whole thing is topped and tailed by a pair of motets from some singers in Aberdeen -- I wonder whether that was wise but I don't want to gripe.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: bioluminescentsquid on August 20, 2019, 08:38:49 PM
(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/005/MI0001005011.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

This disc is triply valuable. First it is as far as I know the only commercial recording with substantial amounts of music played at Uttum. Second it is the only organ recording as far as I know with substantial amounts of music by Thomas Tomkins. Third it benefits from Bernard Klapprott's seriousness and penchant for contrapuntal music.

Klapprott has chosen the pieces carefully, the criterion I most appreciate is that the music here seems to have a singing quality, something which befits the Uttum organ very well. The tangy harmonies of some of the pieces, for example the In Nomine 8 and the piece No.68 (without title), is no doubt partly due to the way the Uttum instrument is tuned.

Klapprott's tendency for sobriety does not prevent him from finding nobility and indeed extroversion when he feels fit, for example in the wonderful Clarifica Me.

One piece I find particularly moving is the "Short verse for Edward Thornburgh."  Thornburgh was executed for his religious beliefs and Tomkins created a musical memorial for him in the form of a pavan. Klapprott follows this with a pair of  pieces  on a related theme, which make for an effective coda. The three are followed by the well known offertory, and that programming seems to work really well to me.

The booklet essay is exemplary, with scholarly and accessible discussions of the music, the Uttum organ and the nature of the English organ in Tomkins's time.

I just gave this disc a re-listen, and I agree 100% here. I've been having difficulties with this recording, since it's not exactly the most accessible music and the playing is quite austere. But once you get into the mood, it's wonderfully poetic.

Without reading your post, I also noted the gently singing treble of the organ and how beautiful the pure 1/4 comma meantone temperament was. (When it comes to temperament, I tend to like very "Mean" ones, or just equal temperament. Kellner is the closest I'll go to a well temperament)

It's great to note that Klapprott limits himself to 5 (Or less? I don't have the booklet out right now) of the instrument's total of 9 stops, citing Tomkin's limited selection of stops on his own organ. So no mixtures or reeds - it's a bit of a shame, since one of the main highlights of the Uttum organ is its ancient trumpet stop dating from the early 16th century, probably one of the oldest reed stops in the world. But it's amazing what can be done with only 5 stops, and I don't think my ears ever get tired because of how interesting the stops intrinsically sound.

A great reminder that a simple little meantone organ can still work wonders in the right hands.

There are also few recordings of the Uttum organ on the Glossa Sweelinck set, played much in the same vein. They are lovely too, and maybe show the organ in slightly more "detail" (Hard to explain, but I catch on more nuances of the sound of the organ in the Sweelinck set than in the Tomkins. Might be a mic placement thing).

Speaking of more early English organ music, any thoughts on this one? I feel like the organ is great and characterful, but just becomes less interesting when next to a great organ like the Uttum instrument. Playing is good, but so far not much has stood out for me.
I do hear a "family relationship" with Uttum, though - the organ sings too.
(https://www.resonusclassics.com/freedownload/RES10143_cover_300dpi.jpg)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 20, 2019, 09:00:52 PM
I wrote some notes on that Farr CD somewhere and I remember liking it. I can’t check now as I have to catch a train.

The Klaprott is fabulous, I may be able to let you have the booklets when I get back, this weekend. (Going to Antwerp for the music festival.)

The only other Tomkins dedicated keyboard CD I know is by Carole Cerasi, and I guess Belder has done a handful of pieces, neither use organ and neither has caught my imagination to date.

One fabulous piece of Tomkins, Pavana Angelica,  is played by the greatest clavichord player since Bach, Siegbert Rampe, here on this Peter Philips CD

(https://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_500/MI0001/163/MI0001163948.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: vers la flamme on August 21, 2019, 01:52:23 AM
Mandryka, can you point me in the direction of great recordings of Orlando Gibbons' keyboard music, preferably played on an authentic virginals? Bonus points if pieces by Byrd are also included.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 21, 2019, 02:56:33 AM
Mandryka, can you point me in the direction of great recordings of Orlando Gibbons' keyboard music, preferably played on an authentic virginals? Bonus points if pieces by Byrd are also included.

Laurent Stewart recorded a single CD with Gibbons and Byrd,  but it's on a Ruckers harpsichord, that's the first thing that came to mind. Virtuoso rather than reflective.

If you can forego the Byrd,  Egarr uses a virginal and I like what he does very much. He's reflective rather than virtuoso. Hogwood too used a virginal.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Que on August 21, 2019, 09:28:07 AM
Mandryka, can you point me in the direction of great recordings of Orlando Gibbons' keyboard music, preferably played on an authentic virginals? Bonus points if pieces by Byrd are also included.

For Gibbons, I like Hogwood:

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/41Abz0vQopL._SY355_.jpg)

For Byrd, the Moroney set us a no-brainer:


Q
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: vers la flamme on August 22, 2019, 02:49:53 AM
Awesome, thanks, boys. Egarr and Hogwood are big names. I shall start there.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 23, 2019, 07:42:04 AM
(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81oKMW5R%2B8L._SL1244_.jpg)

I've heard so much of this sort of music now that I feared I was getting blasé. Anyway this had arrived this morning and quite honestly I've been strapped to my seat -- music for a pair of Lyra Viols (so very contrapuntal -- the lyra viol is built to make it possible to play chords), all by British composers. What can I do to explain the style better than  say that the Pandolfo bowing technique is obviously very much an influence, and indeed it turns out that both of the musicians worked with him in Basel.

How did I find the CD? Well by way of this

(https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/81kr2DfXSEL._SL1474_.jpg)

which I really got because I was attracted to the style of the tenor, Julian Podger. When it arrived I thought I'd made a mistake because so many of the tracks are purely instrumental, and I find c15 instrumental music quite a challenge to enjoy normally. But something must have registered because I played it a lot, and slowly I could see that the ensemble, Musicke and Mirth, were doing very good things indeed, very interesting things with the counterpoint in the music. So one thing leads to another . . .
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 23, 2019, 07:45:17 AM
Awesome, thanks, boys. Egarr and Hogwood are big names. I shall start there.

If you like the Hogwood be sure to try his Fitzwilliam Virginal Bk recording, which I very much enjoy, and indeed his Byrd (My Laydie Nevelle) is well worth checking out I think.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: bioluminescentsquid on August 23, 2019, 01:41:26 PM
Mandryka, can you point me in the direction of great recordings of Orlando Gibbons' keyboard music, preferably played on an authentic virginals? Bonus points if pieces by Byrd are also included.

I think you will like this one:
(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_900/4032324162986.jpg?1512467361)
Music of Byrd, Bull and of course Gibbons.
Played on 6 different harpsichords and virginals, 3 of them originals. Played in the sort of harpsichord style in vogue nowadays that lovers will call dreamy and poetic, and haters limp-wristed. I like it!
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 23, 2019, 08:16:46 PM
Gibbons is really hard to make into music I think. There are only a few dedicated CDs of keyboard music

Daniel Ben Pienaar (Piano)
John Toll (Harpsichord, Virginal)
Richard Egarr (Harpsichord)
Laurent Stewart (Harpsichord)
Christopher Hogwood (Harpsichord, organ, virginal)
Richard Woolley (Organ)

Byrd has been recorded more, much more.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: bioluminescentsquid on August 23, 2019, 11:25:32 PM
Gibbons is really hard to make into music I think. There are only a few dedicated CDs of keyboard music

Daniel Ben Pienaar (Piano)
John Toll (Harpsichord, Virginal)
Richard Egarr (Harpsichord)
Laurent Stewart (Harpsichord)
Christopher Hogwood (Harpsichord, organ, virginal)
Richard Woolley (Organ)

Byrd has been recorded more, much more.

Woolley, do you mean this one? (https://img.discogs.com/kl_YgzZneBzjdTM0t--OhEUQhcY=/fit-in/600x585/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9321542-1478551169-8579.jpeg.jpg)
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 24, 2019, 01:03:12 AM
Woolley, do you mean this one? (https://img.discogs.com/kl_YgzZneBzjdTM0t--OhEUQhcY=/fit-in/600x585/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb():quality(90)/discogs-images/R-9321542-1478551169-8579.jpeg.jpg)

Yes, that’s the one. Some good singing in it too, and some nice organ music when you’re in the right frame of mind for it. The instrument is characterful.

By the way, I’m going to send you the Jaud Erbach later this weekend, it’s good!
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: vers la flamme on August 24, 2019, 02:16:46 AM
I think you will like this one:
(https://d27t0qkxhe4r68.cloudfront.net/t_900/4032324162986.jpg?1512467361)
Music of Byrd, Bull and of course Gibbons.
Played on 6 different harpsichords and virginals, 3 of them originals. Played in the sort of harpsichord style in vogue nowadays that lovers will call dreamy and poetic, and haters limp-wristed. I like it!
This looks good, promising selection. But where can it be found? I see it's available as a download on Amazon, but I'd prefer a CD if possible.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: bioluminescentsquid on August 24, 2019, 01:17:26 PM
This looks good, promising selection. But where can it be found? I see it's available as a download on Amazon, but I'd prefer a CD if possible.

It's online (If youtube allows you to see it in your region) here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DNGTlT5Ndi8&list=PLSZX05Flsi-sNtRjo_icCdWBEDBiR6-X_
Probably on Spotify too, just to try it out.

Of course, CD has better quality. Edit: CD is out of print everywhere! But there are hi-res downloads.
https://www.carpediem-records.de/en/parthenia

Not Early English music, but also check out her Il Cembalo di Partenope disc if you like her style.
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: bioluminescentsquid on August 24, 2019, 01:18:07 PM
Yes, that’s the one. Some good singing in it too, and some nice organ music when you’re in the right frame of mind for it. The instrument is characterful.

By the way, I’m going to send you the Jaud Erbach later this weekend, it’s good!

Yes please!
Title: Re: Early English Instrumental Music
Post by: Mandryka on August 27, 2019, 11:32:39 AM
https://youtube.com/v/CK5gYh7_Jnk

There’s something about the modesty of these performances by Roland Götz which makes me think of Chorzempa’s Orgelbüchlein and Leipzig Chorales. I don’t think that the LP has every been commercially transferred.

Götz is someone who almost missed out on the transition from LP to CD because of distribution and marketing I guess, and who looks as though he’s completely missing out on the transition from CD to streaming and download.