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The Word Unspoken - Sacred Music By William Byrd & Philippe De Monte / Gallicantus

Byrd / Monte / Gallicantus / Crouch
Release Date: 08/28/2012 
Label:  Signum U.k.   Catalog #: 295  
Composer:  William ByrdPhilippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
In Stock: Usually ships in 24 hours.  

Notes and Editorial Reviews



BYRD Tristitia et anxietas. Vigilate. Tribulationes civittum. Vide Domine. Ne irascaris. Quomodo cantabimus. MONTE Domine quid multiplicati sunt. Miserere mei. Voce mea ad Dominum. O suavitas et dulcedo. Super flumina Babylonis Gabriel Crouch, cond; Gallicantus SIGNUM SIGCD 295 (69:17 Text and Translation)


No one should be surprised, seeing these composers paired on one disc, to find that the program concludes Read more with Monte’s Super flumina Babylonis and Byrd’s completion of the psalm setting, Quomodo cantabimus . This Psalm 136, the Jews’ lamenting their exile in Babylon, was a figurative lament of recusant Catholics in Elizabethan England. Sure enough, the notes make it clear that this coupling is the reason for bringing the sacred music of the two composers together. Monte, who had come to England in the choir of Philip II for his marriage to Queen Mary in 1554, may have encountered Byrd, which would explain why, 30 years later, he sent Byrd this eight-part motet set to the first part of the Psalm. The next year Byrd returned the compliment by finishing the Psalm and sending it to Monte. The two motets have been coupled before, most recently in the third disc of Andrew Carwood’s Byrd collection ( Fanfare 23:2) but also earlier by Harry Christophers (14:5) and I Fagiolini (21:3).


All the other Byrd motets are taken from the Cantiones Sacrae of 1589, while Monte’s motets are taken from his Motets, Book 5 of 1579, except for the 1575 O suavitas et dulcedo . The title of the disc, “The Word Unspoken,” refers to the underlying meaning of Scriptural texts that were heard by Catholics as referring to their own situation. Byrd’s 1589 publication is full of such hidden analogies. The notes credit Joseph Kerman and Craig Monson for clarifying these hidden meanings.


The first recording of this vocal ensemble was denied me after all the Robert White discs I had reviewed ( Fanfare 33:6), and their second has not been reviewed yet, but it is gratifying finally to hear the exquisite singing of this eight-voice mixed group. The Byrd motets can be heard in Andrew Carwood’s traversal of the composer’s works, while De Monte’s motets, except for Voce mea ad Dominum clamavi (apparently a first recording), are available on one disc or another. What sets this collection apart, of course, is the theme of recusant Catholics expressing their plight in music. Sally Dunkley’s notes serve this purpose, even pointing out the use of the term “gallicantus” (the name of the ensemble) in Byrd’s Vigilate . Well worth hearing.


FANFARE: J. F. Weber
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Works on This Recording

1.
Tribulationes civitatum by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Written: 1589 
2.
Quomodo cantabimus? by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
Written: England 
3.
Vigilate by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissaince 
Written: pub 1589; England 
4.
Liber primus sacrarum cantionum: Ne irascaris Domine by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1589; London, England 
5.
Cantiones sacrae, Book 1: Vide Domine afflictionem by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1589; England 
6.
Cantiones sacrae, Book 1: Tristitia et anxietas by William Byrd
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1589; England 
7.
Super flumina Babylonis by Philippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
8.
O suavitas by Philippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
9.
Miserere mei by Philippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
10.
Domine, quid multiplicati sunt by Philippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus
Period: Renaissance 
11.
Voce mea ad Dominum clamavi by Philippe de Monte
Conductor:  Gabriel Crouch
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gallicantus

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