Les arts florissants, Paul Agnew
208:27 (3 CDs in a card box)
harmonia mundi HMX 2903777.79
CD1: Selections from books 1-3; CD2: ditto Books 4-6; CD3: ditto Books 7 & 8
This is a robustly packaged bringing-together of LAF’s three CDs of madrigals sampling Books 1-8. Individual discs have strong cardboard sleeves, there is a chunky booklet including thoughtful and comprehensive essays (Eng/Fre) with sung Italian texts and translations (also Eng/Fre), and the outer box is more solid than many. Vocal and instrumental ensembles are directed by Paul Agnew.
In recent years Italian groups have given us passionate, word-driven performances of this repertoire. I think that these LAF performances find a way to balance those series of micro-dramas with a sense of the bigger picture. I’m not saying that this is how to do it. With such amazing music there can be no one way. But this is a fine tribute to a great composer that will not disappoint, even if it sometimes irritates. Why on earth are there recorders in Chiome d’oro (Book 7)?
This site can only survive if users click through the links and buy the products reviewed.
We receive no advertising income or any other sort of financial support.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates.