3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A fantastic disc,
This review is from: Richafort: Requiem (Hyperion: CDA67959) (Audio CD)
I agree wholeheartedly with Stephen Midgeley's excellent review on this page: this is a fantastic disc of wonderful music, superbly sung. I have loved Cinquecento's recordings since I came across their first disc five years ago now and Stephen is right - this is their finest yet, which is really saying something.
The music is stunning. The largest work on the disc is the Requiem by Richafort, a pupil of the great Josquin des Prez and which shows a good deal of the beauty and much of the structural brilliance of the music of his teacher. It is a very fine work of great depth and beauty and a fitting tribute to the master by his pupil. There are also four of Josquin's finest motets and chansons here including Nymphes nappées which has been a favourite of mine for many years, Nymphes des bois (the lovely lament for the death of Ockeghem) and the sublime setting of Psalm 51, Miserere mei, Deus which is one of the true glories of the Renaissance in my view.
All of these, and the other three pieces on the disc, are very, very fine pieces. They are technically magnificent constructions (very well explained in Stephen Rice's excellent notes) but what one hears is simply sublimely beautiful, expressive music. Dorothy L. Sayers said of Dante's Divine Comedy that it has an enduring beauty because it is built on noble bones and the same can be said of these pieces.
Cinquecento sing it all magnificently. They are technically superb with impeccable tuning and a real engagement with the text. They have a full, rich sound recorded in a perfect acoustic whose resonance complements the sound perfectly while never blurring or obscuring the individual lines. It's an absolutely spellbinding sound.
I could go on at considerable length, but I'll stop. In short, this is a fantastic disc of superlative music, beautifully sung by an excellent ensemble. Very warmly recommended indeed.