I've only just found this recording. I wish I'd found it years ago! It is astonishing. Each lai is 30 minutes of one voice singing continuously, 12 lais flowing each into the next without a break - in the first, accompanied in each second piece in 3-part canon by two others; on the second, with a very spare single-line accompaniment on various bowed & plucked strings, one at a time.
No wonder scholars and musicians have largely ignored Machaut's lais, you might think: this certainly sounds like it should be a disc to avoid. BUT in reality it is utterly fascinating. Hypnotic would be entirely the wrong word - there is nothing hypnotic about Covey-Crump's performances. Instead, his singing is completely involving, and the crystal-clear diction makes you stay alert to Machaut's poetry as well as his music throughout. (Indeed, it is easy to spot the places where the texts in the booklet diverge slightly from what Covey-Crump sings, AND to understand what he is singing instead, which is pretty rare in any sung repertoire!) If you've ever enjoyed & been gripped by one of Machaut's monophonic virelais on a Gothic Voices disc, or the monophonic sections of the complete motets disc by Ensemble Musica Nova (though their approach to the virelai is very different), imagine being held in that grip for 10 or 12 times as long, with the same degree of enjoyment.
This has to be the most daring medieval disc I've come across - where else would you hear one voice singing for half an hour virtually alone? But it is triumphantly successful. Machaut always put his long lais at the beginning of his manuscripts, presumably because he too thought they were special. On the evidence of this recording, modern musicians have been criminal in ignoring Machaut's self-recommendation of these vast pieces.