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Vox Luminis - Biber: Requiem - BBC Radio 3 'Record Review'

Biber’s F minor Requiem is on a more human scale and it’s had a number of good recordings over the years from the likes of Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Paul McCreesh and Jordi Savall. This new one from Vox Luminis with the Freiburger BarockConsort directed by Lionel Meunier stands alongside the very best of them I think. Gently sorrowful, dignified, luminous, performed and recorded with an intimacy that makes the best of the chamber sized forces. Five solo singers, five more for the fuller passages, five string players and three trombones for funereal solemnity. It’s easy to imagine Biber himself leading … one of the great violin virtuosos of his time playing the solo violin part that rises above the ensemble: the light in the darkness.

[A] beautifully touching performance. Could easily be a top recommendation for the requiem alone but Biber's mass for the dead is surrounded by music that gives us a fuller picture of the emerging styles of German baroque music at the time and the recording seems to glow with the same graceful sincerity as the performances.

 

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BBC Radio 3 'Record Review'
27 March 2021