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Clemens non Papa: Requiem & Penitential Motets

Clemens non Papa: Requiem & Penitential Motets


Clemens:

Missa pro defunctis 'Requiem'

Tristitia et anxietas

Vae tibi Babylon et Syria

Erravi sicut ovis a 5

De profundis

Vox in Rama

Peccantem me quotidie

Heu mihi, Domine


The Brabant Ensemble, Stephen Rice

The Brabant Ensemble under their director Stephen Rice presents music for the dark time of the year. Its latest disc of 16th-century polyphony features the extraordinary compositional gifts of Clemens non Papa, put to the service of the Requiem mass and a selection of motets on a pentitential theme. Within this general aspect of solemnity can be found countless shades of expression and emotion.

Despite the popularity of the composer’s music during his lifetime, Clemens is a somewhat marginal figure today and many of these motets have never been recorded before. Yet, listening to this music today, one is immediately enthralled by its opulence and harmonic lushness, very different from the occasionally sterile polyphony of some of the composer’s contemporaries. The Brabant Ensemble’s fresh, uncluttered and sincere performances truly bring this glorious music to life.

“The disc opens with his subdued Requiem Mass. Many groups would have tackled this with exaggerated dynamics, squeeze-boxing every phrase for maximum impact. Here, though, we get absolute calm, good tuning and chordal singing that glows from within...the Ensemble does full justice to the brilliant Tristitia et anxietas, and the De Profundis is thrilling.” BBC Music Magazine, February 2011 ****

“The Brabant Ensemble grips immediately with the pure serenity of its immaculately tuned, perfectly balanced sound...the singers' sumptuous tone at full volume is overwhelming...These are no bored, deadpan monks. One senses everywhere excitement and pleasure in this underperformed repertoire.” Classic FM Magazine, February 2011 *****

“the gravely beautiful requiem mass in four parts that's the main work on this Clemens disc is very contained and often rather understated, qualities that the Brabant Ensemble capture perfectly...the sound of the recording from Merton College Chapel, Oxford, is a little lacking in immediacy, though nicely seraphic.” The Guardian, 27th January 2011 ***

“his Requiem seems a plain and severe thing, especially in the beautiful but very restrained performance by this excellent young choir. Too restrained, I first thought, but on a second hearing the tiny expressive inflections became moving. Give these performances time and they’ll reward you richly.” The Telegraph, 3rd February 2011 ****

“The Brabant Ensemble sing [the Requiem] with an admirable clarity, assisted by a very transparent acoustic and recorded sound image...Clemens and this recording are both worth hearing.” Gramophone Magazine, March 2011

“The singing thorughout is as refined and expressive as one would wish from a small (11-12 voices) and relatively youthful ensemble, under the direction of an intelligent director for whom clarity of diction and mellifluousness of sound are of the utmost importance...this is another fine release by an ensemble...[who are] bringing before the public little-known repertoire, the worth of which it passionately believes in.” International Record Review, March 2011

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Hyperion - CDA67848

(CD)

Normally: $17.00

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Philippe Rogier: Music from the Missae Sex

Philippe Rogier: Music from the Missae Sex


Cabezón, H:

Cancion francesca glosada

Ave maristela

Clemens:

Inclita stirps Jesse

Rogier:

Missa Inclita stirps Jesse

Missa Philippus Secundus Rex Hispaniae

Da pacem, Domine a6


This recording, the second celebrating the 450th anniversary of Rogier’s birth, is a new collection of premiere recordings by the Renaissance composer, including the Missa Philippus Secundus Rex Hispaniae and a selection of Iberian Polyphony.

Magnificat, who specialise in the restoration and performance of neglected choral masterpieces of the 16th and 17th centuries, received critical acclaim for its previous Rogier recording, which IRR described as “brilliantly realised” and “an excellent recording”.

The lush textures and colours for which Rogier is renowned are highlighted by the singers and musicians, which include His Majestys Sagbutts and Cornetts, in this historically-informed performance that is bursting with vitality and energy.

Directed by Philip Cave, Magnificat is one of the world’s premier vocal ensembles.

Previous recordings have been very successful: Thomas Tallis Spem in alium was hailed as “quite the best recording” by Gramophone Magazine and was First Choice in Building a Library on BBC Radio 3's CD Review. In addition, its recording of Victoria’s Officium Defunctorum was named Critics’ Choice by Gramophone Magazine and chosen by The Rough Guide as one of its 100 Essential Classical CDs.

In association with Linn Records, Magnificat has undertaken many highly successful recording projects of music from ‘The Golden Age’, including works by Gesualdo, Guerrero, Josquin, Rebelo, Victoria, Allegri, Tallis, Rogier and Palestrina.

“I'm not sure what inspired Magnificat's director, Philip Cave, to fly the flag for Philippe Rogier but this recording vindicates his decision to do so.” Gramophone Magazine, February 2012

“The Council of Trent would have been pleased: with just two voices per part, and with clear diction and articulation from the members of Magnificat, the texts are generally easy to follow. The lower voices are captured especially well, and the blend between the voices and His Majesty's Sagbutts and Cornetts is gorgeous.” BBC Music Magazine, March 2012 *****

“This is a superb, vibrant disc of some first-rate music...The singers of Magnificat have a rich, creamy sound, well blended but with each voice part's individuality also fully audible. They also have an excellent sense of line, particularly valuable in Rogier's dense writing” International Record Review, February 2012

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Linn - CKD387

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Song of Songs

Song of Songs


 

Antiphons: Dum esset rex, Nigra sum, Laeva eius, Speciosa facta es, Iam hiems transiit & Alleluia:Tota pulchra es

Plainchant

Ceballos:

Hortus conclusus

Clemens:

Ego flos campi

Gombert:

Quam pulchra es

Guerrero:

Surge propera amica mea

Ego Flos Campi

Trahe me post te, Virgo Maria

Lasso:

Veni dilecte mi

Lhéritier:

Nigra sum (5vv)

Palestrina:

Osculetur me osculo oris sui

Nigra sum sed formosa

Victoria:

Vadam et circuibo civitatem

Vidi speciosam

Vivanco:

Veni dilecte mi


The most 'profane' book of the Old Testament was among the favourite biblical texts of the Middle Ages. The composers of the Renaissance made particular use of it as a metaphor of divine love, or in association with the cult of Mary. After their first two extremely successful recordings, the singers of Stile Antico have chosen some of the most sumptuous examples of these musical settings.

“…the superb singers of Stile Antico are up to the challenge of presenting all the required moods from pious restraint… to melting abandon… a magnificent display of the very best kind of polyphonic music.” BBC Music Magazine, May 2009 *****

“The standout piece is Tómas Luis De Victoria's epic motet "Vadam et circuibo", a masterpiece of polychoral ingenuity.” The Independent, 29th May 2009 ****

“This ensemble, its members still in their 20s and just a dozen beautifully blended voices singing a cappella, has emerged as one of the best and freshest early music choirs around. Their third CD is a selection of motet and plainchant settings from the Song of Songs, the startling Old Testament collection of erotic love poems ascribed to King Solomon.” The Observer, 3rd May 2009

“…these are just the sort of performances I'd hope to hear in church, which was (one feels) the practical and creative laboratory for what is recorded: full but not strained singing, allowing an advantageous acoustic and the number (212) and freshness of voices to take care of blend and balance, with plenty left in reserve for the longer spans of the two magnificent Victoria anthems, Vadam et circuibo and Vidi speciosam.” Gramophone Magazine, August 2009

“One expectation that such an album may raise in its listeners is an answer to the question of what common and special inspiration might composers have taken from contemplating this most erotic of Biblical texts. The symptoms of their reactions might be sensuous melismas, perhaps, and anguished suspensions, surging bass–lines and… let us draw a veil there. Such devices and stratagems are in abundance, whether chastely deployed in turn by Clemens and Palestrina or flaunted all at once in the selections of Guerrero and Gombert, though no more so than they would be on a programme of Marian or Lenten devotions; and these are just the opening four tracks.
That unfair calculation ignores the plainchant antiphons between each pair of motets. These interspersions work well – as they must in a genuinely liturgical context, as here, thanks to the quiet good taste and stylistically homogeneous approach of Stile Antico, with an especially winsome unanimity to the female–only Tota pulchra es.
Indeed, these are just the sort of performances one would hope to hear in church, which was (one feels) the practical and creative laboratory for what is recorded: full but not strained singing, allowing an advantageous acoustic and the number (12) and freshness of voices to take care of blend and balance, with plenty left in reserve for the longer spans of the two magnificent Victoria anthems, Vadam et circuibo and Vidi speciosam.”
Gramophone Classical Music Guide, 2010

GGramophone Awards 2009

Best of Category - Early Music

GGramophone Magazine

Editor's Choice - August 2009

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Harmonia Mundi - HMU807489

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The Essential Tallis Scholars

The Essential Tallis Scholars


Allegri:

Miserere mei, Deus

Brumel, A:

Missa Et ecce terrae motus: Gloria

Byrd:

Mass for five voices

Clemens:

Ego flos campi

Pater peccavi

Cornyshe:

Ah, Robin, gentle Robin

Salve Regina

Despres:

Praeter rerum seriem

Isaac:

Tota pulchra es

Lasso:

Alma Redemptoris Mater

Salve Regina

Ave Regina caelorum

Palestrina:

Sicut lilium inter spinas (from Motets Book I)

Rore:

Descendi in hortum meum

Sheppard, J:

Media vita

Tallis:

In manus tuas

O nata lux de lumine 5vv

Audivi vocem de caelo

Victoria:

Ave Maria for double choir

White, Robert:

Exaudiat te Dominus


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Gimell - CDGIM201

(CD - 2 discs)

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Perti: Messa a 12

Perti: Messa a 12


Colonna:

Laudate Dominum

Perti:

Messa a 12

Sinfonia avanti la serenata

Plaudite


Elena Bertuzzi, Francesca Cassinari, Sonia Tedla, Jacopo Facchini, Francesco Giusti, Raphaël Mas, Alberto Allegrezza, Michele Concato, Baltazar Zúñiga, Carlo Bonarelli, Gabriele Lombardi & Abramo Rosalen

Color Temporis Vocal Ensemble, Choir and orchestra of The Cappella Musicale di San Petronio & Collegium Musicum Almae Matris Chamber Choir, Michele Vannelli

Sacred vocal music recorded at the Basilica San Petronio in Bologna, 2006 by two Italian composers of the Baroque era.

Includes Giacomo Antonio Perti’s large-scale Mass for 12 voices and three choirs.

“Perti's music reveals a young and perceptive musical imagination, especially in the constellation of ever-changing solo-voice combinations and the rousing double fugue with which he brings the Mass to such a glorious conclusion. Lovers of Baroque polychorality will enjoy this” International Record Review, February 2012

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Dynamic Musica Antica - CDS707

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Coma: Sacrae Cantiones (1614)

Coma: Sacrae Cantiones (1614)


Claudio Cavina, Paolo Fanciullacci, Andrea Favari, Gianluca Ferrarini, Sergio Foresti

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Dynamic - CDS237

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40 Voices

40 Voices


Ceuleers:

Nomen mortis infame

Comes, J B:

Gloria

Despres:

Qui habitat

Gabrieli, G:

Exaudi me Domine

Maessins:

En venant de Lyon

Rebelo:

Lauda Jerusalem

Striggio:

Ecce beatam lucem

Tallis:

Spem in alium for eight five-part choirs '40-part Motet'

Wylkynson:

Jesus autem transiens/Credo in Deum


While the latter half of the sixteenth century saw the first stirrings of the Baroque, this period also witnessed the creation of the finest cathedrals in sound, with their foundations in the distant Gothic era of music ... Composers vied with each other in daring and ingenuity, presenting works with twelve, sixteen, twenty-four and even, in the case of Tallis’s famous Spem in alium, forty different voices! The Huelgas Ensemble celebrates its thirty-fifth anniversary with a spectacular selection of these works, recorded live without a ‘safety net’.

“...as the many polyphonic strands surround you – and here they do surround you, thanks to this hybrid SACD – you’d have to have a cold heart not to be caught up in the performances. The ingenuity of the composers is extraordinary” Andrew McGregor, bbc.co.uk, 14th February 2007

“this live recording testifies to their astonishing dynamism, energy and coherence.” Gramophone Magazine

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Harmonia Mundi - HMC801954

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Mouton: Missa Dictes moy toutes voz pensées

Mouton: Missa Dictes moy toutes voz pensées


Compère:

Dictes moy toutes voz pensées

Mouton, J:

Missa Dictes moy toutes voz pensées

Quis dabit oculis?

Ave Maria … benedicta tu

Salva nos, Domine

Ave Maria ...Virgo Serena

Nesciens Mater


"Jean Mouton was routinely compared in his lifetime with Josquin on account of his astonishing compositional technique yet his music is quite distinct. He is able to convey such a spirit of calm and poise that in the whole of Renaissance art it is really only rivalled by the altar-pieces of Giovanni Bellini and Hans Memling."

Peter Phillips

“an admirably rounded view of Mouton.” Gramophone Magazine, Awards Issue 2012

“outstanding realisations of Mouton's wonderful music...clarity is achieved notwithstanding his mathematical methods, and it's a quality that's brought out superbly by the Tallis Scholars and by the excellent recording, providing both sharp focus and a sense of spaciousness and depth.” BBC Music Magazine, November 2012 *****

GGramophone Awards 2013

Finalist - Early Music

BBC Music Magazine Awards 2013

Choral Finalist

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Gimell - CDGIM047

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Conti: Cantatas

Conti: Cantatas


Conti:

Con più lucidi candori

Ride il Prato

Lontananza dell'Amato

Vaghi augelletti


Rossana Bertini (soprano), Anna Simboli (soprano)

La Signoria

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Tactus - TC680301

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Naked Byrd Two

Naked Byrd Two


Barber, S:

Agnus Dei

Buckley, D:

Strengthen ye the weak hands

Byrd:

Mass for four voices - Agnus Dei

Contractus:

Salve regina

Hildegard:

Spiritus Sanctus Vivificans

O virtus sapientae

Lotti:

Crucifixus

Purcell:

Hear my prayer, O Lord, Z15

Roberts, J:

Never Seek to Tell Thy Love

Tallis:

The Spirit of Tallis

arr. Christopher Monks

Tavener:

Funeral Ikos

The Lamb

Victoria:

Versa est in luctum


Armonico Consort, Christopher Monks (director)

This recording is compiled from the Armonico Consort’s Naked Byrd programmes, featuring music by composers who wore their hearts on their sleeves, and whose art saw their emotions laid bare, in an atmospheric concert where magical musical moments are intertwined with sublime passages of plainchant and violin improvisation. It follows on from their first volume in December 2009. Armonico Consort is, at its heart, a highly talented vocal ensemble that stages a wide variety of concerts.

“perhaps most moving of all is the "Agnus Dei" section of Samuel Barber's Adagio for Strings, re-scored by the composer for eight-part harmonies.” The Independent, 28th January 2011 *****

“Armonica Consort is a very capable choir, clearly responsive to its conductor's urgings and producing a lovely sound which does not need the heavy layers of resonance to enhance it.” International Record Review, March 2011

“The choral blend and recorded balance are of demonstration quality. The music has a predominantly slow harmonic pulse, where vocal lines can float, suspensions can melt and the listener can relax and marvel at the singers' superb breath control and rock-steady intonation...[a] disc of unending delight” Gramophone Magazine, May 2011

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Signum - SIGCD235

(CD)

Normally: $17.00

Special: $13.60

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