Eros (Renaissance Love Songs) & Thanatos (Plainchant for the Dead)

chant 1450, Ken Zuckerman Indian sarod
Christophorus CHR77397

This is a bit of a rag-bag: chant from All Souls’ Day from a 1545 manuscript from Toledo (is that particularly different from other places and periods?) – that’s the death element, interrupted by erotic songs by Enzina (Encina in Grove), with a third element from North Indian art music; surprisingly, I was aware of such music in 1960/61 thanks to a student who visited a very small group and talked and played to a few friends in Cambridge.

The chant lacks any explicit emotion, and the Enzina is hardly erotic – it sounds rather dull in comparison with what I know of him. The sarod has the advantage of vigorous movement. But you will need to be a certain type to make much sense from the CD as a whole.

Clifford Bartlett