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Sacred Music by Alonso Lobo

Francisco Guerrero , Alonso Lobo , The Tallis Scholars Audio CD
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)


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The Tallis Scholars were founded in 1973 by their director, Peter Phillips. Through their recordings and concert performances, they have established themselves as the leading exponents of Renaissance sacred music throughout the world. Peter Phillips has worked with the ensemble to create, through good tuning and blend, the purity and clarity of sound which he feels best serve the Renaissance ... Read more in Amazon's Tallis Scholars Store

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Product Details

  • Performer: The Tallis Scholars
  • Composer: Francisco Guerrero, Alonso Lobo
  • Audio CD (November 11, 1997)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Polygram Classics
  • ASIN: B0000041M5
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #376,167 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Motet: Maria Magdalene
2. Missa Maria Magdalene: Kyrie
3. Missa Maria Magdalene: Gloria
4. Missa Maria Magdalene: Credo
5. Missa Maria Magdalene: Sanctus & Benedictus
6. Missa Maria Magdalene: Agnus Dei I & II
7. Motets: O quam suavis est, Domine
8. Motets: Quam pulchri sunt
9. Motets: Ave Regina caelorum
10. Motets: Versa est in luctum
11. Motets: Credo quod Redemptor
12. Motets: Vivo ego, dicit Dominus
13. Motets: Ave Maria

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

The Tallis Scholars first brought the music of 16th-century Spanish composer Alonso Lobo to wide public attention with their recording of Victoria's Requiem: the last item on that disc was Lobo's powerful motet Versa est in luctum, written for the funeral of Philip II in 1598. That motet has become quite popular, having been recorded half a dozen times since; now Gimell has released an entire CD devoted to Lobo. Versa est is here again (in an even better performance), along with several other fine motets and the Missa Maria Magdalene, a gleaming six-voice Mass based on an Easter motet by Lobo's teacher, Guerrero. --Matthew Westphal

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Typical Tallis scholars... June 12, 2000
Format:Audio CD
Alonso Lobo was held in the highest regard as a composer in his time - he was considered to be one of the finest composers of his time (a sentiment shared, incidentally, by fellow composer Victoria). His output is of extremely high quality. It displays a wide range of extremely potent emotion; that range is represented on this recording. The Mass is a brilliant piece (brilliant, I mean, in color) - the sonority is bright and joyful. The Kyrie is beautiful, marked by soaring lines. The music displays the same compositional skill as music by Lobo's more well known contemporaries (Palestrina, Victoria, etc.). Versa est in luctum is one of my favorite pieces, not only for the sheer beauty of its part writing, but for the sensitive attention Lobo pays to the emotions indicated in the text (despair, compassion, penitence, and ultimately hope). It is truly a masterpiece. That's not to say that all the pieces are included are not of great value - but Versa est is particularly stunning. The title of the review "Typical Tallis Scholars" implies some merit and some faults. As my other reviews of the Tallis Scholars indicate, they are technically immaculate. They sing with perfect pitch, dynamics, etc. Unfortunately I think they often fail to become involved in the music, giving a cold, removed reading. A consistent problem I find is the harshness of the soprano part, which I think has two causes: one is Phillip's decision to transpose the music up in pitch (which he does often) - the effect is to put stress on the soprano part. But I've heard the Tallis Scholars perform live and the lack of balance didn't seem to be a problem, so I think the harshness comes from the recording itself and not their singing. Read more ›
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars inventive music of the spanish renaissance June 1, 2000
Format:Audio CD
This is a recording of music by Alonso Lobo; not to be mistaken for Duarte Lobo. Alonso Lobo was the pupil of Francisco Guerrero, one of the most famous composers of the Spanish renaissance.
This disc features Lobo's Missa Maria Magdalene; which was modeled after Guerrero's Motet about Mary Magdalene (also included). The motet and mass are both very compelling and beautiful.
Guerrero's motet itself is enchanting in its sheer beauty. Male and female voices interplay in recounting Mary's anointing of Jesus' feet as well as the discovery of the empty tomb.
The mass setting reveals both Lobo's inventiveness and the artistry of the Tallis Scholars. The Kyrie is particularly interesting. It starts out sounding as if it were sung by a self-consciously cute child that has been caught with their hand in the cookie jar and is trying to con their way out of trouble. From there, it then becomes to a more somber plea for forgiveness and mercy.
The Mass is followed by several motets composed by Lobo. My personal favorite of them is Ave regina caelorum, which features some beautiful singing on the part of the sopranos.
This is an exceptional recording. At 63.09 there is a lot of music here for your money. The Tallis Scholars are standard bearers when it comes to renaissance vocal music; and their reputation is reaffirmed by this recording. I recommend it to you.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Bottomless! January 24, 2011
Format:Audio CD
"Bottomless" refers to my awe at the musical profundity of the Spanish composers of the 16th Century -- Guerrero, Victoria, Anchieta, Vasquez -- including Alonso Lobo (1555-1617), however little known his music is today. Born in Osuna, Lobo had the good fortune to become a choir boy in Seville under the tutelage of Francisco Guerreo. Evetually he became Guerrero's chief assistant, replacement while Guerrero traveled, and eventual successor. Lobo's 'sacred' music is in every way a continuation of Guerrero's style. His Missa Maria Magdalene pays tribute to his teacher by using Guerrero's motet of the same name as his model. (The motet is track one on this CD.) Lobo's stature in his own era was quite high; Victoria esteemed him his equal, and his music was often compared to Palestrina's. All of them, those spacious polyphonists of the Spanish Golden Age, are unmatched in their somber spiritual grandeur. [Did I use the word 'spiritual'? Uf! I don't know much about 'spirits' -- excepting the Water of Life -- but I know 'spiritual' when I hear it.] Lobo was less an innovator and more a perfecter of the distinctive Spanish polyphony that evolved from the models of the Franco-Flemish masters. Typically, his motets are his most adventuresome compositions, particularly the "Ave Maria" that concludes this recording. It's a work for two choirs of four voices, in which the upper voices interact in complex canonic shifts.

This CD is, as far as I know, the only recording totally devoted to Lobo's music currently available. Hey, I wish the demand for this music were as "bottomless" as the repertoire!

"Bottomless" also refers, however, to The Tallis Scholars. This performance is characteristic of their skills and their perverse weaknesses.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very nice find among Renaissance liturgical music September 27, 2007
Format:Audio CD
The other reviewers give a far better appreciation of the technical merits of the Tallis Scholars' interpretation and other fine points of this recording. Speaking as the peripetatic (sic) amateur who pokes his nose into some of the dustier corners of world music, I find this an excellent find off the beaten trail. It is richer than the medieval plainchant and purer, and more inspiring than the more elaborate baroque and classical works. A very decent find for the roaming listener.
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