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on 31 March 2015
concise and very interesting. well written
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Unfortunately if, like me, you aren't that knowledgeable about music to being with, you won't really come out the other side knowing your ars (antiqua/nova)* from your alba**. In such a short book, too much about history and personalities and not enough guidance on the music itself. There are something like 35 pieces on the accompanying website (there is also a CD version available), but a helping hand in better understanding the musical differences and developments would have been desirable.

*"Old/new art" - terms given by late medieval musicians to the older and newer styles.
**A type of troubadour/trouvere piece about illicit lovers parting at dawn (alba = 'dawn'), in case you were wondering.
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on 6 July 2014
The Middle Ages began with the collapse of the Roman world. This left a military and political system in ruins – but a cultural world-view largely intact. Artistically rich and varied in themselves, the medieval centuries also sparked both the artistic Renaissance and the religious Reformation that followed. Rich – but musically lost? Buildings and statues endure, but how can we ever really know about early music and what the Medieval and Renaissance world sounded like? From the evidence that remains, modern performers have embarked on the great adventure of rediscovering, recreating and reinventing some of the earliest surviving music of Europe – with prolific and fascinating results. Discover just some of them through this book and accompanying website.
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