Three Instrumental Discs

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Program: #14-46, Air Date: 11/10/14

The latest from Phantasm dedicated to John Ward; the Rose Consort of Viols takes us on a European tour, and young Thomas Dunford picks up the archlute.

NOTE: All of the releases on this program are from recent recordings of mostly instrumental material from the 16th and early 17th centuries.

 I. Serenissima: Music from Renaissance Europe on Venetian viols (Rose Consort of Viols). Delphian CD DCD34149.

From AllMusic.com:The tradition of Renaissance viol consort music can be difficult for the casual listener to get a handle on; the sound of the viols, wheezy and glassy when not played well, tires in large quantities, and the pieces mostly have the same texture and slow tempo. This release by Britain's Rose Consort of Viols is expressly dedicated to exploring the sound of Venetian instruments, in modern replicas, and indeed the rounded sound of these viols, all inspired by the single surviving example of a viol from Venice in the 16th century, may well attract fans of this music. But the album may also be a strong choice for those who have struggled with viol consort music in the past. Much of what's most familiar in the viol repertory came from England, but the music was pan-European, and that's one key to understanding it. Viol music was an intellectual tradition, inward rather than outward looking, and it is at its most characteristic when a composer is taking a tune that originated in one country and reworking it in another. Many of the works here -- "La my la sol," "Ich stund an einem Morgen," "In nomine," and "Doulce memoire" -- were treated over and over again by different composers as a display of technique. The seemingly small range of the music is in fact its essence: composers had to show what they could do within that small range, and this album lets the listener get an idea of how enthusiasts of the 16th century heard viol music.

ITALY

FESTA: Three contrapuncti on ‘La Spagna’, ISAAC: Palle, palle, V
ERDELOT: Altro non e’l mio amore,
ANON: Three dances, c.1530,
ISAAC: La my la sol
GERMANY

LASSUS: Im Mayen,
ISAAC: Ich stund an einem Morgen,
SENFL: Ich stund an einem Morgen a 3, Ich stund an einem Morgen a 4, Fortuna ad voces musicales,
LASSUS: O sacrum convivium
FRANCE

Le JEUNE: Première Fantasie,
SUSATO: Doulce mémoire a 3,
SANDRIN/ORTIZ: Doulce mémoire, Cipriano de Rore: Kyrie from Missa Doulce mémoire
ENGLAND

BASSANO: Pavan and Galliard,
PARSLEY: In Nomine a 4 No. 2,
TYE: In Nomine ‘Howld fast’,
WILDER: Fantasia con pause e senza pause,
ANON: Four dances, c.1560,
BYRD: Fantasia a 3 No. 2,
PARSONS: Song of Mr Robert Parsons,
HOLBORNE: Pavan and Galliard 41 & 42

II. John Ward—Fantasies & Verse Anthems (Phantasm/Choir of Magdalen College, Oxford). Linn CD CKD 427.

Featuring ambitious and accomplished music for voices and viols, 'Ward: Fantasies & Verse Anthems' offers a privileged glimpse of a special moment in English music history.

The four-part viol fantasies complement Phantasm's previous recording of Ward's five- and six-part works and show an equally fluent and skilful style exemplifying Jacobean consort fantasy at its best.

The Choir of Magdalen College, Oxford join Phantasm to perform Ward's verse anthems which contain an ever-shifting kaleidoscope of textures and generous word painting amidst a polyphonic swirl of viols.

This recording is a fitting tribute to John Ward, whose efforts have been rediscovered in our own time and whose mellifluous music deserves a closer look.

Phantasm's illustrious recording career has resulted in the viol consort being repeatedly recognised at the Gramophone Awards with a one Award and several 'Finalist' nods to its name.
Phantasm's debut on Linn, 'Ward: Consort music for five and six viols' was named a 'Choice' recording by BBC Music Magazine whilst also receiving many five and four star reviews.
Phantasm has been widely acclaimed for its previous Linn recordings; 'Byrd: Complete Consort Music' was named BBC 'Disc of the Month' and 'Lawes: Consorts to the Organ' was nominated for both BBC and Gramophone Awards.

The award-winning ensemble has been applauded across the globe for its moving performances and is recognised as the most exciting viol consort active on the world scene today.

Critics have described their performances and recordings as 'intoxicating', 'revelatory', 'electrifying', 'interpretations pervaded by a truly burning spirit'.

The quartet's international members (from Britain, Finland and the US) are based in Oxford and have toured extensively throughout Europe, North America, and East Asia. They are joined by Emily Ashton and Christopher Terepin for this performance.

1. Fantasia 2 a4 (VDGS 22)
2. Praise the Lord, O my soul
3. Fantasia 5 a4 (VDGS 25)
4. Mount up, my soul
5. Fantasia 1 a4 (VDGS 21)
6. Down, caitiff wretch (Part 1)
7. Prayer is an endless chain (Part 2)
8. Fantasia 3 a4 (VDGS 23)
9. How long wilt thou forget me, O Lord
10. Fantasia 4 a4 (VDGS 24)
11. Let God Arise
12. Fantasia 6 a4 (VDGS 26)
13. This is a joyful, happy holy day

 

III. Kapsberger: Labrinto d’Amore (Thomas Dunford, archlute/Anna Reinhold, mezzo). Alpha CD 195.

 

available at Amazon

 

 

  

 

 

 

 

 

The 'Eric Clapton of the lute' (BBC Magazine) comes back to the Alpha microphones, this time with the soprano Anna Reinhold. Here, Thomas Dunford applies his truly prodigious virtuosity to the eight Toccatas from the first book by Meister Kapsberger, giving us a veritable concert such as the composer himself might have proposed with, in counterpoint to the toccatas, a few of the loveliest airs by Caccini, Merula et al. The beauty of Anna Reinhold's voice (a young talent noticed especially in William Christie's 'Jardin des voix') has a freshness and energy that bring to mind the young performers at work in Alpha's earliest recordings. This goes to prove that there still remains much distance to cover in the discovery of Baroque art.

From Charles Downey: A superlative program of lute songs by John Dowland, reviewed this spring in live concert, brought together countertenor Iestyn Davies and lutenist Thomas Dunford (also recorded for Hyperion). Today sees the release of a similar program, this time focused on the Italian lutenist-composer Giovanni Girolamo Kapsberger, who was born a generation after Dowland, uniting Dunford with mezzo-soprano Anna Reinhold. The meat of the program features Dunford, on an archlute, in sensitively phrased renditions of the eight toccatas from Kapsberger's first book of lute tablatures, printed in 1611. In the booklet, along with the informative essay by scholar Alessio Ruffati (and English translations in need of another editor's pass), Dunford acknowledges the guidance of lutenist Paul O'Dette, who has recorded the Kapsberger works for lute, and Hopkinson Smith. One could also mention William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, whose training program for young artists was where Dunford and Reinhold crossed paths. Where the program with Davies was focused on the rarefied, contained sound of his voice, Reinhold uses a somewhat broader edge to her tone, to give a greater scope to the dynamic contrasts of the airs. Since Kapsberger is remembered, quite justly, more as a lutenist than as a vocal composer, the program is sprinkled with vocal selections by composers who knew better what to do with a voice, including Giulio Caccini, Claudio Monteverdi, Barbara Strozzi, and Tarquinio Merula -- the last's Canzonetta spirituale sopra Alla Nanna, a rather gorgeous lament-cum-lullaby sung by the Virgin Mary to the Christ child, turning the amorous tone of the recording in a different direction. The acoustic of the recording space, the Chapelle de l’Hôpital Notre-Dame de Bon Secours in Paris, is resonant and captured in exquisite sound.

L''Eraclito amoroso (Barbara Strozzi).
Toccata III. Toccata VI (Johannes Hieronymus Kapsberger).
Io che dal ciel cader (Giulio Caccini).
Toccata VII. Avrilla mia. Toccata IV (Johannes Hieronymus Kapsberger).
La legera amorosa (Claudio Monteverdi).
Toccata II. Ultimi miei sospiri. Toccata V (Johannes Hieronymus Kapsberger).
Amarilli mia bella. Mentre che fra doglie e pene (Giulio Caccini).
Toccata VIII. Toccata I (Johannes Hieronymus Kapsberger).
Canzone spirituela sopra la nina nana (Tarquinio Merula).
Amarilli mia bella
Io che dal ciel cader
Mentre che fra doglie
Kapsberger, Johannes Hieronymous

Avrilla mia
Toccata I
Toccata II
Toccata III
Toccata IV
Toccata V
Toccata VI
Toccata VII
Toccata VIII
Ultimi miei sospiri
Merula, Tarquinio

Canzonetta spirituale sopra alla nanna 'Hor ch'e il tempo di dormire'
Monteverdi, Claudio

Lettera amorosa 'Se i languidi miei sguardi'
Strozzi, Barbara

L'Eraclito amoroso - See more at: http://www.europadisc.co.uk/classical/115967/Kapsberger_-_Labirinto_dAmore.htm#sthash.Hj9cu1Cv.dpuf
Caccini, Giulio

Amarilli mia bella
Io che dal ciel cader
Mentre che fra doglie
Kapsberger, Johannes Hieronymous

Avrilla mia
Toccata I
Toccata II
Toccata III
Toccata IV
Toccata V
Toccata VI
Toccata VII
Toccata VIII
Ultimi miei sospiri
Merula, Tarquinio

Canzonetta spirituale sopra alla nanna 'Hor ch'e il tempo di dormire'
Monteverdi, Claudio

Lettera amorosa 'Se i languidi miei sguardi'
Strozzi, Barbara

L'Eraclito amoroso - See more at: http://www.europadisc.co.uk/classical/115967/Kapsberger_-_Labirinto_dAmore.htm#sthash.Hj9cu1Cv.dpuf
Caccini, Giulio

Amarilli mia bella
Io che dal ciel cader
Mentre che fra doglie
Kapsberger, Johannes Hieronymous

Avrilla mia
Toccata I
Toccata II
Toccata III
Toccata IV
Toccata V
Toccata VI
Toccata VII
Toccata VIII
Ultimi miei sospiri
Merula, Tarquinio

Canzonetta spirituale sopra alla nanna 'Hor ch'e il tempo di dormire'
Monteverdi, Claudio

Lettera amorosa 'Se i languidi miei sguardi'
Strozzi, Barbara

L'Eraclito amoroso - See more at: http://www.europadisc.co.uk/classical/115967/Kapsberger_-_Labirinto_dAmore.htm#sthash.Hj9cu1Cv.dpuf
Merula, Tarquinio

Canzonetta spirituale sopra alla nanna 'Hor ch'e il tempo di dormire'
Monteverdi, Claudio

Lettera amorosa 'Se i languidi miei sguardi'
Strozzi, Barbara

L'Eraclito amoroso - See more at: http://www.europadisc.co.uk/classical/115967/Kapsberger_-_Labirinto_dAmore.htm#sthash.Hj9cu1Cv.dpuf

Composer Info

Tarquinio Merula, John Ward, Claudio Monteverdi, Barbara Strozzi, Giulio Caccini, Johannes Hieronymus Kapsberger,

CD Info

Alpha CD 195, Delphian CD DCD34149, Linn CD CKD 427,