Munrow is magnificent
Glen Pettigrove | Riverside, CA USA | 11/20/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"The first disc in this collection is delightful. David Munrow's recorder is a genuine treat. The vocal parts blend well and create a festive atmosphere. The Early Music Consort of London offer a splendid performance. By contrast, the second disc, which features Musica Reservata, is a bit disappointing. Two of the solo voices on disc two are harsh, detracting from an otherwise pleasant recording. They may fairly represent the performing style of sixteenth century Florence, but that is small consolation for the twentieth century ear. Nonetheless, the virtues of the first disc are sufficient to warrant purchasing this collection. Munrow is magnificent."
W. M. Robbins | The Beautiful Blue Ridge | 10/13/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Italian culture during the period from the 14th to the 16th centuries was a whirlwind of developing literature and art, and during this period of history Florence was a political and cultural center to rival Milan or Verona.
I love medieval and renaissance music. They are the "roots" of the great classics centuries later. One does not cultivate a complete education of art by studying only such Masters as Van Gogh, Renoir, Picasso, Dali etc. So it is with fine music.
These CD's contain examples of Florentine musical composition from the 1300's and 1500's. The first CD, performed by David Munrow and the Early Music Consort, covers compositions from the 1300's, with many of the works of Francesco Landini, the most prolific Florentine composer of this period. The second covers music from the 1500's and is performed by John Beckett and the Musica Reservata. Here we can see the early development of both symphonic structure and opera.
Both discs are wonderful examples of different periods in the history of musical development, and performed by different conductors and artists. Therefore a comparison between the two is unfair and misplaced. David Munrow and the Early Music Consort are superb, as I have always found them to be, and John Beckett and the Musica Reservata are equally enjoyable.
If you appreciate early music you will find this recording to be a fantastic addition to your collection, and perhaps the definitive collection of early Italian music. If you are unfamiliar with early music or with Italian Renaissance music then these CD's would be a wonderful introduction."
Best Italian Renaissance disc available.
W. M. Robbins | 06/27/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This re-issue of recordings from the early 70's by the Early Music Consort Of London is,in my opinion,the best recordings of Italian Renaissance works.It is the favorite of my eary music discs,and includes music treasures from 14th and 16th century Florence. Great listening on both discs,and worth the money!"