Pierre De La Rue: Masses / The Sound And The Fury
Label: Fra Bernardo
Sound and the Fury, The
For the upcoming 500th anniversary of the death of the great Franco-Flemish composer Pierre de la Rue (around 1460-1518), the vocal ensemble The Sound and the Fury, which specializes in early music, has recorded a selection of the composer’s artistic masses for the label FRA BERNARDO, which impressively reflect the high standard at the court of the music-loving and music-savvy Margaret of Austria. The Pierre de la Rue masses on this recording have one thing in common: they are all based on monadic models, thus in keeping with the most traditional of cyclic mass composition models, the cantus firmus mass. Yet in their individual construction they could not be more different. Two of these masses employ just one single cantus firmus. The one based on the secular melody L’Homme Arme is the earliest of them all. L’Homme Arme was the most common secular cantus firmus of all and composers who wrote a mass based on it were aware of competing with their contemporaries. La Rue’s work is no exception and displays an exuberant, almost unashamed virtuosity which only a young and extremely self-confident composer is capable of producing.