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Josquin Desprez: De Profundis; Motets / Cordes, Weser Renaissance

Desprez / Weser-renaissance Bremen / Cordes
Release Date: 10/30/2012 
Label:  Cpo   Catalog #: 777588   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews



JOSQUIN DES PREZ De profundis. In exitu Israel. Domine ne in furore tuo. Miserere mei. Memor esto verbi tui. Qui habitat in adjutorio. Misericordias Domini Manfred Cordes, dir; Wester-Renaissance Bremen CPO 777 588-2 (70:26 Text and Translation)


This is a good selection of motets because it hardly duplicates the last two such discs. On Orlando Consort’s collection of Josquin’s motets ( Fanfare 34:1), only Read more style="font-style:italic">De profundis is heard, and none of them are on David Skinner’s more varied disc (33:1). It follows another Josquin disc by Cordes (35:6), though it was recorded a year later, a fine offering that unfortunately had to compete with an excellent recording of a Mass in Peter Phillips’s ongoing series. The unusual aspect of this program is its concentration on psalm settings, Psalms 129, 113, 37, 50, 118, and 90, respectively; the final piece is a compilation of texts mostly from six other psalms. The predominant sentiment that runs through these texts is repentance, most notably in the Miserere mei , one of the composer’s greatest works and the most familiar of these on disc. Standing apart from the rest is In exitu Israel , a psalm that simply narrates the passage of the Israelites out of Egypt and celebrates the glory of the one true God, mocking the idols who “have mouths, but speak not.” This psalm concludes Vespers every Sunday. Another familiar psalm is Qui habitat in adjutorio , which is sung every night at Compline, the concluding Office of the day, expressing not so much repentance as trust in God’s mercy.


The two psalms just cited seem to be first recordings, and the remaining four are poorly represented on disc ( Memor esto verbi tui is on Jeremy Summerly’s Ockeghem disc, 22:1), so this collection is not only well focused but also desirable, for Cordes shows a fine grasp of the style, and the voices are warm and well blended. It may be noted that De profundis is on Andrew Kirkman’s interesting collection (25:4) with attributions to Champion as well as Josquin, but the authenticity of the Josquin attribution, like all of these pieces, is validated by Helmuth Osthoff, Jeremy Noble, and both old and new editions of the complete works. The performances by Cordes’s ensemble of eight singers are uniformly fine. Again Franz Vitzthum is a distinguished member of the group, but all the voices blend effectively. Let us have more like this, for there has never been a systematic survey of Josquin’s motets on disc.


FANFARE: J. F. Weber
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Works on This Recording

1.
Qui habitat by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance 
2.
Miserere mei, Deus by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance 
3.
Memor esto verbi tui by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance 
Written: by 1510 
4.
Domine ne in furore tuo, motet for 4 parts by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance 
5.
De profundis clamavi by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance 
6.
In exitu Israel in Egypto by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance  
7.
Misericordias Domini by Josquin Des Préz
Conductor:  Manfred Cordes
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Weser Renaissance
Period: Renaissance  

Sound Samples

De profundis: "Psalm 129"
In exitu Israel de Aegypto, "Psalm 113"
Domine ne in furore tuo ... quoniam, "Psalm 37"
Miserere mei Deus secundum, "Psalm 50"
Memor esto verbi tui, "Psalm 118"
Qui habitat in adiutorio Altissimi, "Psalm 90"
Misericordias Domini

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