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Harmonia Mundi
HMG 507020

Code-barres / Barcode: 0794881853021
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Reviewer: Tom Moore

Kapsberger, from a noble German family, but born and raised in Venice, might be called, without much hyperbole, the Frescobaldi of the lute, a virtuoso instrumentalist with a similarly extravagant imagination, and also employed in Rome. I first became acquaintained with his music through the 1980 recording by Konrad Junghänel for Accent (not available on CD) which paired a side of Kapsberger with a side of works by his contemporary Piccinini. Anthony Bailes, Jakob Lindberg, and Toyohiko Satoh have also recorded a few selections. This is superb music, melodious, with just enough counterpoint, harmonically and rhythmically cogent, nicely spiced with runs and trills, wonderfully apt for the instrument (one can only surmise that those academics who criticize Kapsberger's music—in Grove, for example—haven't heard it). O'Dette, for my money the world's finest lutenist, does the music full justice, and the sound is first-rate. You'll want this one. 



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