Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
It's the most subtle level of interpretation that I find a wanting in Alessandrini's Vespers. The whole performance seems vaguely neutral to me, and being neutral, Alessandrini has difficulty convincing my ears of the unity of the whole 2-CD affair. In comparison, the performance by Les Arts Florissants, led by William Christie, offers a thoroughly majestic, triumphant interpretation. Christie takes slightly more stately tempi and uses choral forces and extra instruments, but the key difference is in the conducting. At the other end of the interpretational spectrum, the recording by Tragicomedia under Stephen Stubbs is jubilant and amorous. Tragicomedia performs strictly one-on-a-part, and Stubbs takes brighter tempi in almost every section than either Christie or Alessandrini. Stubbs's conducting is more incisive rhythmically and he handles the triple rhythms more joyfully, a la ritornello. Both Christie and Stubbs get more definition from their continuo players, especially from the organs, emphasizing the structure of the music in three layers - voices, obbligato instruments, and continuous bass.Read more ›
Big mistake! The marvellous drama that Gardiner and others bring to the piece is largely gone. In its place is this often rather flat, undramatic rendering. This is not to say that it is not well-sung and -played, it is (it is also extremely well recorded). Indeed, some of the solo and duet items are excellent, ditto some parts of the Magnificat (I actually preferred the second version of the Magnificat) and the Sonata Sopra Sancta Maria is, I think, the best I've heard. However, to me, the big Psalm settings just fall completely flat. Thud (rather, splat). I love the drama that Gardiner and Suzuki and others bring to them. I don't care how authentic is this approach and how much scholarly justification there is for it, I'm not that keen on it, and it's not one that I will listen to very often.
Now I know that there are folk who like their Monteverdi Vespers lean and thin and wearing a hair shirt. I suspect they will love this, and I respect their opinions. However, for devotees of grand Monteverdi, think twice - at least...
One other beef, which I hope is not typical. When my set arrived, I could hear stuff rattling around inside the package. It transpired that only one tooth remained intact in each of the central holders, so both CDs were sloshing around in a sea of broken teeth. I suspect that this is the manufacturer's fault, using too brittle a grade of polystyrene. Amazon's packing seemed completely adequate.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Let me say it straight and clear:
music is a universal and (!) a local affair.
I believe that a good music can cross every boundary, but on 3 conditions:
1. Read more
I agree wholeheartedly with Johji Josquin, who points out the key elements to this splendid performance--it is sung "one to a part" and closely miked--which combine to help to make... Read morePublished on February 24, 2006 by B.B. Lilikoi