Since September 2010, this blog has recorded the journey of this middle-aged man as I attempt to listen to all the music in my CD collection. CDs revisited in their entirety from start to finish - no skipping tracks, no shuffle. CDs only - no vinyl, no tapes, no downloads. And just as CD technology (and the album format itself) becomes obsolete. I'm no music critic, just a music junkie with too much time on my hands.

Friday, May 23, 2014

The Antiphonal Music of Gabrieli (1996)

A 1996 compilation of two previously released albums: The Virtuoso Brass Of Three Great Orchestras Performing The Antiphonal Music Of Gabrielli (1968, tracks 1-13) and Music For Organ And Brass: Canzonas Of Gabrieli And Frescobaldi (1959, tracks 14-32).

In brass circles, this is a seminal CD with the brass sections of three major orchestras (Philadelphia, Cleveland, and Chicago) playing the antiphonal Renaissance music of Italian composer Giovanni Gabrieli (c. 1554/1557 – 1612).  The latter part of the disc has the brass from the Boston Symphony Orchestra playing alongside E. Power Biggs on the organ.  I prefer the first half to the latter half.  The contrapuntal writing is wonderfully complex and the performances here are exquisite, with a beautiful ensemble sound with regard to articulation, dynamics, and intonation.  However, that doesn't mean I necessarily want to hear this music for over an hour. For me, it's definitely more fun to perform this music than to listen to it.  I don't mean to disparage the album at all; it's just not something I'll pull off the shelves very often.

Personal Memory Associated with this CD:  Many years ago, I performed several of the pieces on this disc (Canzon à 12, Canzon Noni Toni, Canzon Per Sonare No. 3), but my performances pale compared to these recordings.  These recordings also remind me of Kelly, a friend for a brief time, who moved away before we had time to really bond over our similar, but eclectic, musical tastes.

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