This is a very beautiful recording of a magnificent work. There are several very fine recordings already, both with and without plainchant, most notably by the Tallis Scholars, The Gabrieli Consort and Westminster Cathedral. This stands with the best of them, I think.
Victoria was a real master of polyphony and this is among his very greatest works, possibly his greatest of all. The music is powerfully spiritual and laments without ever being miserable or oppressive. It is quite stunningly beautiful throughout and is one of my favourite works of all. Philippe Herreweghe has chosen not to include plainchant here, so there is space for several very fine motets, too.
Herreweghe and his choir bring out the Requiem's qualities quite wonderfully. They are technically excellent, with impeccable intonation, a lovely balance and blend, great fluency of line and a wonderful sense of engagement with what they are singing. It is recorded in a warm, resonant acoustic...
I just reviewed the Tallis Scholars 1987 recording of this work - still available and still wonderful. But having picked this surpise up yesterday (Herreweghe hasnt recorded much Renaissance stuff lately) I felt impelled to chime in with my ever humble personal opinion.
If you know and love this work by Victoria - arguably his greatest, GO GET THIS DISC!!!! If you are a Victoria Requiem newbie: GO GET THIS DISC!!!! It doesnt replace my previous favorite, but it will happily join my collection. The 13 singers sound so full and rich! The music's sense of mourning and weeping (but not anything depressing) really comes through. The bass singers really provide a nice solid foundation without getting fog hornish (as Tallis Scholars did at times) and the recording, done in the church of Notre Dame du Liban in Paris, is so gloriously clear and atmospheric.
I am also so glad that the full range of dynamics is sung: my Tallis Scholars review bemoaned the all...
Deeper music of the Renaissance and an exceptional performance. Intense, serene and refined, one of the greatest musical gems of all time into a great version of Herreweghe.
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