Magazine article Gramophone

Obrecht: Missa Grecorum

Magazine article Gramophone

Obrecht: Missa Grecorum

Article excerpt

Obrecht Missa Grecorum. Agnus Dei (attrib). Cuius sacrata viscera a 4. Mater Patris/Sancta Dei genitrix. O beate Basili. Salve regina a 6 The Brabant Ensemble / Stephen Rice Hyperion (F) CDA68216 (74' * DDD * T/t)

Jacob Obrecht (1457/58-1505) is still not as well represented on disc as one might hope, despite having (briefly) succeeded Josquin Desprez in Ferrara and having written over 30 cyclic Masses. This excellent premiere recording of Missa Grecorum is a very welcome addition to his discography and also includes the first recording of the motet 0 beute Basili.

The Brabant Ensemble open with Obrecht's most famous motet, the six-voice Salve regina, which listeners may know from the superb 1995 recording by the Oxford Camerata under Jeremy Summerly (Naxos). This new recording by Stephen Rice and The Brabant Ensemble is not dissimilar to Summerly's reading but offers a more sinewed vocal texture. In particular, Rice's slightly brisker tempos offer more buoyancy; and coupled with the agility of his ensemble and his harmonically scrumptious edition (just listen out for the juicy false relations on 'lacrimarum valle' 'vale of tears'), it makes for a mouthwatering performance. …

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