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  • La Folia 1490-1701
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La Folia 1490-1701 Import

15 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Import, February 9, 1999
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Editorial Reviews


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  • Sample this album Title (Sample)
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (February 9, 1999)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Alia Vox Spain
  • ASIN: B000023YPG
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #81,065 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

35 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Stephen A. Haines HALL OF FAME on December 28, 2004
Format: Audio CD
Jordi Savall's special talent for reviving lost or obscure music is no better illustrated than by this album. The "Folia" are country dances, sometimes frenetic in their rendition, other times sedate and even-paced. The full range of those characteristics are presented in this collection of interpreters of the "folia" idiom. From Roderigo Martinez in the last years of the 15th Century to the Versailles Court musician Marin Marais two centuries later, Savall provides a glorious musical tour of time and place. He seems almost to transport himself away from the present as he plays. Time and space are compressed to an environment limited only by the music's expressiveness. With the roots in peasant dances, that's a wide space which Savall fills with delightful playing. The broad spectrum of styles in the pieces grant this CD an equally expansive audience.

Savall's group, whose renditions of these pieces can only be described as exquisite, is the core of later ensembles. Each member brings a strong sense of the professional to the music. Even given such a background team, it is Savall's rich, precise and meaningful use of the da gamba that rightly predominates. He is an undisputed master of evoking the fullest expression the instrument can produce. The music leaves the listener breathless even when but seated as an audience. What must it be like for a professional dance troupe to perform to these sometimes frantic tones? The entire performance is dazzling and inspiring. This CD could be considered the acme of his performances - a judgment tempered only by knowledge of later and even more glorious releases.

Alia Vox has taken the lead in producing the most superior of recording techniques for Savall's musical skills.
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27 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Simon Zaleski on July 1, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This collection contains dances and variations written on an old Spanish dance pattern. While the entire disc can be said to include only a handful of different harmonies, the endless sets of variations are anything but boring. Instead, they constitue a musical journey that takes you through three countries and over two hundred years of music-making.

The journey begins in Spain, around the time Columbus made his famous voyages. The first variations are filled with spirit and joy and are both wild in nature and yet refined and exquisite under Savall's fingertips. After a set of five wonderful pieces, there next comes a later Spanish piece for gamba, continuo, and...castanets! This piece concludes with a rousing col legno section that needs to be heard to be believed.

Next is a great rendition of Corelli's Follias, also known as his 12th violin sonata. The volin part is played in a period arrangement for gamba, and Savall uses the treble instead of the bass viol for the part, which sounds great and offers a good opportunity to comapre the treble viol to the violin. Under Savall's touch, the viol gives the violin a run for the money! Great fun.

Lastly, we have Marais' masterful Follias d'Espangne, and after hearing them performed like they are here, what more can be said? This CD would make a wonderful purchase for yourself or a friend, and would be a great way to introduce someone to early music. This disc is yet another reminder of why Jordi Savall, as the previous reviewer so well put it, deserves to be considered among the top musicians of our day. Alia Vox does a great job of presenting these discs in great packages and with wonderful sound quality. The days of second-rate period instrument performances are coming to a close.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A. Siegel on September 10, 2006
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
This CD contains a selection of Folia variations from Spain (mostly), Italy and France over a period of about 200 years. Savall and his ensemble are among the best -- their playing has a great richness to it. A very good anthology -- if you love "La Folia", you can't go wrong with this CD.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Lacrimatorium on September 28, 2010
Format: Audio CD
I am not given to overstatement. I don't say that such and such a thing is the best ______ ever all the time, but THIS IS. The first version of La Folia alone is worth much more than the price of admission. And the rest is pure excellence. I'd recommend this to Classical music fans, dance lovers, folk musicians, rock and rollers. Anyone. Listen and reconsider the shape of the world... the 21st Century does not define reality. But this gets much closer.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By J. R. Trtek on October 10, 2012
Format: Audio CD
I'm a great fan of Jordi Savall, though there are some of his albums I can take or leave, and this one requires a bit of thought. The disc is meant to provide us with several snapshots of La Folia over the course of two centuries, and I find the beginning of the journey very nice indeed, though I must admit that I can't perceive the original tune in the anonymous version that leads off the disc -- it's a wonderful little performance, however. On through the first five selections, it's the same story: Wonderful playing, with the marvelous sound of the viol at the fore. After those first variations from the 16th Century, we jump to the Baroque, with Antonio Martin Y Coll's being the first selection where the La Folia tune is truly unmistakable, and Savall's rendition is exquisite. This is followed by the supposed big hitters on the disc, Corelli and Marais. Here I have to admit that my enthusiasm began to wane just a bit. The forces that were finely tuned to the 1500s don't seem quite up to the early 1700s. Though the playing is still executed with skill and finesse, the I've heard performances of the Corelli and Marais variations that packed a little more force behind them -- those by the Purcell Quartet come to mind. Still, these performances are okay, and matched with the marvelous selections that preceded them, they are part of a disc that slides into the group of Savall discs that I definitely want to take rather than leave.
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