Antegnati: 12 Ricercari

Federico Del Sordo organ and harpsichord
Brilliant Classics 95628

I must say that the prospect of 12 Ricercari (all that is mentioned on the front of the booklet) by even one as distinguished as Constanzo Antegnati was rather daunting but I need not have worried! The counterpoint flows suavely, enlivened by some athletic ornamentation, and the historic organ is a constant delight. Furthermore, contrasting music by other composers is interspersed among the ricercari and played on stringed keyboard instruments: modern copies of an early 17th-century harpsichord and fretted clavichord, this last a rare treat. Here and there, the keen-eared will detect a few inconsistencies of articulation but there is far more to enjoy than to carp at. The booklet is informative and interesting about the music, its context and the organ (though in English only) and detailed organ registrations are available online, though it wouldn’t have been difficult to include them. Recommended especially for early keyboard buffs.
David Hansell

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