Though he was organist for Winchester College and Chichester Cathedral, the Elizabethan master organist and composer Thomas Weelkes is best known for his vocal compositions: his madrigals and anthems. The Consort of Musicke, under the direction of Anthony Rooley, is one of the most accomplished early music groups, with some of the finest voices in England contributing to the group over its several-decade history. This album is an especially inspired collection of Weelkes' best work, the caliber of performance matching the high quality of the compositions.
This anthology might carry the subtitle of Weelkes' Greatest Hits: from 'Thule' to 'When David Heard', the best-known pieces are all here, and there is no better-rounded overview of his music than this... (The Consort's) lighter touch has considerable charm in the madrigals and canzonets such as 'As Vesta Was' or 'Harke All Ye Lovely Saints', and in the songs of mourning they find many affecting touches. --Gramophone