Phantasm: Gibbons: Consorts for Viols - American Record Guide


18 May 2015
American Record Guide
Ardella Crawford

This is one of the better viol consort programs I have heard. Included here are 11 fantasias in all, 2 In Nomines, and a few odd pieces, including instrumental renditions of some keyboard pieces and two of Gibbon's anthems: ‘O Lord, in thy wrath rebuke me not' and ‘Hosanna to the Son of David'. In the notes Dreyfus mentions having been warned away from "straying off his turf" by including arrangements of these other works, but I have to say his approach seems true to the baroque spirit of arranging music, and the results seem to have justified his decision-the experiment is a success.

Gibbons's music has more of a forward thrust and drive than, say, Purcell's or Jenkins's pieces of like nature. I was interested to read in the notes that Gibbons was Glenn Gould's favorite composer-not exactly something one would expect! Still, I remember many years ago listening over and over to Gould's very fast, energetic piano rendition of Bach's Italian Concerto, so it is understandable that the energy in Gibbons's work would appeal to him.

Beautiful music, wonderfully performed, excellent sound.     
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