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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 26 November 2011
This is a re-issue and repackage of the outstanding set by Brilliant Classics of the complete works of Thomas Tallis. Everything here is the same as the original release Tallis - The Complete Works so my previous review applies:

The music of 16th Century English composer Thomas Tallis spans the reigns of four English monarchs and some 5 decades between the 1530's and 1570's, the entire surviving output of his musical works being represented on this 10CD box set.

All the works are performed by the 8 voice English `Chappelle Du Roi' directed by founder Alistair Dixon, recorded at various venues between 1996 and 2004. All information such as dates, venues, soloists are included on the card CD sleeves and although I would like to have seen a brief booklet with overview of the works, the CD ROM with 75 pages of comprehensive notes provides more than any enclosed booklet could offer.

The set offers a really unique chance to hear all of the composer's works in such a uniform interpretation - as far as I'm aware there has been no previous undertaking by anyone to perform and record all of Tallis's works onto a single volume, and indeed some of his compositions are heard here for the first time. The bringing to life of music which has lay unplayed for perhaps centuries is a huge achievement and suitable compliment to one of the finest composers of the Renaissance period.

Lovely performances, quality recordings nicely presented in compact (2cm thick) card box which is unmatched in terms of value for money. I can't help wondering why the famous `Tallis Scholars' haven't done this?.
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This is a truly excellent set, and at a bargain price. I have loved Tallis's music for many years and have a lot of dearly loved recordings by The Tallis Scholars, Magnificat, the Hillard Ensemble and others which won't be superseded by this set, but are certainly beautifully complemented by it. The approach of Alistair Dixon and Chapelle du Roi is calm and restrained, and the music glows as a result. The singers are very good, tuning is virtually faultless and the absence or restrained use of vibrato ideal. The overall sound is very warm, by and large, emphasised by resonant acoustics in all the recording venues, and this eight-year project is a very fine achievement which does real justice to one of England's greatest composers.

The music itself is magnificent. Obviously, in any Complete Works there will be some pieces which are of less interest to individual listeners, and while I'm not over-keen to hear lengthy organ settings of Felix namque on a regular basis, there will be those who are. There is a wealth of magnificent music and, of course, there are little-recorded gems to discover among the better-known pieces. It's worth saying that Disc 9 - The Instrumental Music and Songs - was named by a reviewer on Radio 3's CD Review as an Essential Tallis disc. Quite right, too, in my view - the playing by Charivari Agréable is excellent and the counter-tenor Stephen Taylor is very good, too. The disc also includes `Ye sacred muses', Byrd's lament on Tallis's death, which is a real bonus.

Brilliant Classics make a pretty good job of the packaging. It's cardboard, but attractive and durable. All the original liner notes and texts are supplied on a CD-ROM as Adobe Acrobat files. It's good to have them, although one can't really sit down comfortably with the text in front of you as you could with a booklet. For so much superb music at such a price, though, this is a sacrifice well worth making - it's a fantastic set of wonderful music and very warmly recommended.
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on 26 January 2014
My interest in the music of Tallis was reawakened when we purchased the TV series "The Tudors". These ten CDs seemed perfect and went on my Christmas 2013 wish list. I did not however imagine the pleasure they would give me. The singing is wonderfully controlled, the sound beautifully clear, the music immensely powerful and spiritual. A magnificent journey through a turbulent yet rich period of English history. Each CD (apart from the last one) is around an hour long which is perfect for listening in the evening after work. It is difficult to pick out any one CD above the others but if pushed I would probably choose number 7 "Music for Queen Elizabeth" with the jewel in the crown "Spem in alium" - waves and waves of beautiful sound, no matter how often you listen to it you always discover details you had not heard before.
This well-presented box-set is an absolute bargain for all lovers of Tudor music. Recommend it to friends who do not habitually listen to 16th century music. Many people who stumble across these gems by chance admit they soon become hooked.
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on 25 December 2012
I certainly couldn't listen to all these CD's back to back- the music is insensely spiritual and at times emotionally overwhelming such is its' power. It is however an amazing body of work which will be played and played. The Chapelle du Roi are stunningly human and ethereal in their interpretation and I would recommend it to anyone who enjoys the spiritual experience of choral singing in an "out of this world" dimension
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on 11 October 2012
I'm so happy with the 10 CDs. The music is just amazingly beautiful. When I ordered, I did not realize I was getting 10 CDs, but when they arrived I realized why my purchase cost so much. Well worth it!
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I've not had the time to listen to all of this yet but the bits I have listened to are very beautiful indeed. The "Spem in alium" is first class and compares well with the Tallis Scholars version. This seems to be an incredible bargain so don't hesitate if you like this type of music.
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on 26 July 2015
I couldn't really be more pleased with this purchase...and what a bargain additionally. Without the slightest knowledge, I have been an unknowing fan of Tallis' music for years on end. This super box set has been a revelation so far as I have already recognised so many pieces I have heard previously in various contexts.
I received this box set very recently, so I have only been through three of the discs so far. In short, I have loved all three and I have little doubt I will feel the same re the remaining discs. Just buy this set - you will not regret it. Superb bargain and highly recommended.
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on 24 March 2012
This is an excellent recording with a very clear information format, which makes selecting pieces very easy. Having all the music recorded in the same ambience by the same choir also gives a comprehensive overview of Tallis's work.
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on 10 July 2014
I can only agree with other reviewers, just about worked through all the CDs and very pleased. I just hope people realise that Tallis wrote many more pieces than Spem in Alium, which I don't think is one of his best works anyway. Also, don't be put off by the apparent "church service" pieces, which are well worth a listen.
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Sometimes with these kind of editions you might expect substandard performances and/or sound but that's certainly not the case here with the Chapelle du Roi under the direction of Alistair Dixon. Although not equal to the standard of such as the Tallis Scholars recordings of Tallis' music, it's still excellent, and you get his entire output in this ten disc set (plus an eleventh disc, a CD-ROM with the original individual disc booklet notes and sung texts as PDF files), and over the first seven discs of sacred music we get a picture of how English church music changed from Henry VIII to the Reformation, and through Queens Mary and Elizabeth.
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