Cavalcade of harpsichord
Jonathan J. Casey | the twin cities | 11/14/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"IF you're willing to shell out the big bucks AND have the interest in listening to 3 hours or so worth of French baroque keyboard music, then this is a good investment. I'd love to recommend this to the casual passer-by but such a recording really requires a commitment. It was completely worth it. Two of my favorite peices for harpsichord can be found here: on disc 1, track 14 and disc 3 track 18. In the first case I think you will find the music very moving, in the second you will be blown away by the sheer sound. I've heard Kenneth Gilbert's recording of the Onzieme Ordre, Cinquieme Acte, etc. and I have to say his student has surpassed him. Rousset has a much more natural sound to him, not that it comes off as easy, but the playing is much smoother without losing any bite. The other stunning quality to this collection is the variety of sounds produced by the same instrument. It is a mid-17th century French keyboard and it manages to be lush and reverberant, crisp, gentle, and aggressive from track to track. Couperin may've had no idea that some day his music would be packaged and sold like this, but it is treated how it deserves to be: with a stunning performance and excellent recording."