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American Record Guide: (01/2018) 
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Reviewer: Catherine Moore

This excellent program uses a set of “motetti missales” by Loyset Compere (c 1445-1518) as the centerpiece for an exploration of the musical wealth associated with the Duke of Milan. Music by four other composers—Agricola, Lubeck, Martini, and Weerbecke—alternates with eight liturgical motets by Compere, each “in place of” one section of the Mass: Introit, Gloria, Credo, Offertory, Sanctus, Elevation, Agnus Dei, and Deo Gratias. There is no setting of the Mass texts themselves because “these [motetti missales] cycles were performed during the mass and represented a sort of sonic accompaniment to the liturgical action”. It is a credit to the high reputation of Paolo Da Col, leader of the vocal ensemble Odhecaton, that he is joined here by three top instrumental ensembles and leading organist Liuwe Tamminga. Tempos are perfectly judged, the balance of voices and instruments allows all to be heard and the polyphonic lines to dovetail gently together to beautiful effect. Human and instrumental “voices” join together, by turns stately, noble, reverent, and tender. A wide variety of timbres is judiciously, precisely, and effectively deployed, whether the reeds and brass of La Pifarescha or the vielles, harp, lute, and cornetto of La Reverdie. Fanfare-like short sonatas by Lubeck, played by the six trumpets and timpani of Pian&Forte, fittingly open and close the program. Striking examples of touching beauty abound, such as delicate harp interwoven with vielles in the instrumental version of Agricola’s ‘Homme Banni’, followed by ‘Salve, Mater Salvatoris’ where singers are joined by shawms and trombones. Four of the motets (some 18 minutes in total) are beautifully played by Tamminga, performing on the “old” (1475) organ at San Petronio Basilica in Bologna. I always smile when I hear organists refer to the “new” organ there: it’s from 1596! Two fine booklet essays tell about the music and the cultural environment where was created and performed. I’m always happy to see short bios of booklet-note writers—in this case Agnese Pavanello and Daniele V Filippi—who both work at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis. Their observation that, “like many important composers of the late 15th Century, Loyset Compere has long remained, for the modern audience, eclipsed in the shadow of Josquin des Prez”, makes us all the more appreciative of the value of this release. Notes, texts, translations. To further explore recordings by Odhecaton, I recommend Gesualdo’s Sacrarum Cantionum (Ricer 343, N/D 2014).

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