Spem In Alium - Music For Monarchs And Magnates

Full size album art
Label: CORO
Catalog: CORSACD16016
Format: SACD

This Super Audio-Hybrid CD will play on all conventional CD Players. PThe Sixteen’s anthology of a century of royal repertoire composed ‘for monarchs and magnates’ is the real thing: a masterpiece of detective work, rare repertoire and artful editing, and a fitting celebration of its first quarter-century devoted to early music. Pride of place goes to a pair of recordings of Tallis’s Spem in alium, in Latin and in English (as Sing and Glorify), the rich mingling of its eight five-voice choirs revealingly captured in the spacious clarity of surround sound, a process that could have been invented for this purpose. PHarry Christophers’s booklet note explores the possible origins and challenging symbolism of this work, a theme even more potently expressed in Byrd’s motet ‘Deus venerunt gentes’. Another religious exclamation (but this time protesting against Puritan excesses in the Civil War), Tomkins’s grandly tortured outpouring ‘O God, the heathen are come’, is recorded for the first time in John Milsom’s reconstruction. PSackbuts and cornets add splendor to ceremonial items by Tallis and Gibbons, and in the hands of these skilled players also add their note of sublime grief to another Tomkins score: ‘Know you not’, a lament for Henry, Prince of Wales, that forms the emotional heart of this collection. – BBC Music Magazine.

Price: $27.98