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The Forgotten Kingdom/Le Royaume Oublie
Jordi Savall, Montserrat Figueras
The Forgotten Kingdom/Le Royaume Oublie
Genre: Classical
 
Catharism was the name given to a Christian religious sect that appeared in the Languedoc region of what is now southern France and flourished in the 12th and 13th centuries. The Cathars saw matter as intrinsically evil. T...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Jordi Savall, Montserrat Figueras
Title: The Forgotten Kingdom/Le Royaume Oublie
Members Wishing: 2
Total Copies: 0
Label: Alia Vox
Original Release Date: 1/1/2010
Re-Release Date: 3/9/2010
Album Type: Hybrid SACD - DSD, Import
Genre: Classical
Styles: Historical Periods, Early Music
Number of Discs: 3
SwapaCD Credits: 3
UPC: 7619986398730

Synopsis

Product Description
Catharism was the name given to a Christian religious sect that appeared in the Languedoc region of what is now southern France and flourished in the 12th and 13th centuries. The Cathars saw matter as intrinsically evil. They denied that Jesus could become incarnate and still be the son of God and thus, the Catholic Church regarded the sect as dangerously heretical. Faced with what they saw as a rapidly spreading cancer, the Church called for a crusade, which was carried out by knights from Northern France and Germany and was known as the Albigensian Crusade. This campaign, and the inquisition that followed it, eradicated the Cathars completely. It also had the effect of weakening the semi- independent southern principalities in the area, ultimately bringing them under direct control of the King of France. Occitania, once a crossroads of many cultures, was one of the victims of the Albigensian Crusade. Occitania s refined culture culminated in the troubadour tradition, which subsequently spread to Italy, Spain and Greece. Related movements sprang up throughout Europe: the Minnesingers in Germany, trovadorismo in Galicia and Portugal and the trouvères in northern France. On this album, Jordi Savall not only explores the classical period of the troubadour school from around the turn of the 13th century, but also provides us with a comprehensive historical and artistic background of this Golden Age. It is time we remembered this forgotten kingdom where much of what we call Western culture was incubated.
 

CD Reviews

Remembering the Forgotten Kingdom
Julie M. Hopper | Bendigo Victoria Australia | 01/24/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Having been a fan of Jordi Savall and Montserrat Figueras for many years now, I felt sure that this production would be up to their usual excellent standards. It is. The story of the Cathars deserves to be remembered. It is a wonderful and terrible story of what happens when the followers of a particular human philosophy are overrun by a mind-set which sees nothing but evil in viewpoints other than its own. The parallels with latter-day fundamentalism and terrorism are disturbing.

The presentation is sumptuous - three CDs and a hardback book amply illustrated with images from manuscripts of the 12th and 13th centuries, and text written in seven different languages. It is a fitting tribute to the brave and tragic people known as Cathars, and indeed to all people who have fallen foul of prevailing ignorance and narrow mindedness simply because of ideological difference.

Hear the music, read the story - you cannot remain unmoved."
Beautiful - as always?
CB23 | 04/17/2010
(4 out of 5 stars)

"This is a lavish release: a stunning book packed with images and information about the history, persecution, and destruction of the Albigensian cathars, and three well-filled CDs. Savall and his ensemble make a haunting, wonderful sound, but I cannot help feeling that it is in every last detail the sound they have been making for the last twenty years. Even though I can put my feet up and enjoy both the book and the music, I cannot make myself believe that the performances I hear have any specific connection to the history I am being told - which is slightly disturbing when the history is so tragic."
Yet Another Great Effort From Jordi Savall
René Malle | 06/21/2010
(5 out of 5 stars)

"In agreement with what everyone has written here so far, and there doesn't need much to be added to what's been said about this great release. I was also expecting a lot from The Forgotten Kingdom and wasn't disappointed.

So why bother to add to the reviews found here? The previous three reviewers did point out that there are three CDs, but I don't think anyone mentioned that they are Hybrid CDs playable in glorious SACD sound as well as having a good quality red book (regular) 16 bit CD layer. Savall's regular CDs have wonderful sound, but his SACDs offer extraordinary sound. There are none better, actually. They are on a par with the best Hybrid SACDs from Channel Classics.

Others have pointed out that the book which accompanies the CDs is a big one. Not quite sure if it was mentioned, nor can you tell from the cover photo of the Forgotten Kingdom but his is no ordinary book. It's 563 pages, and there's a lot in it, even the text is duplicated in four languages (French, Italliano, Castillano, and English). The illustrations are a wee bit small, but the quality of the printing and the binding of this cloth book is magnificent. Clearly a labor of love on the part of the Savall family, not an effort to make money, it must have cost quite a lot to publish it. So don't think of it as simply a three album SACD with a a big booklet. I have never seen such quality in music release until purchasing The Forgotten Kingdom. Remarkable!"