Guerrero: Missa De la batalla escoutez & other works
CDH55340 Helios (Hyperion's budget label)
Guerrero’s setting slows the melody so that it becomes a structural girder, still clearly heard, its steady pace being set off by the rapid counterpoint of the accompanying voices. The tune is passed from treble to tenor, from the top of the music eventually to the bottom in verse 4. By setting the fifth verse, breaking the alternation, Guerrero sticks to an old Spanish custom of making a specially solemn version of ‘Tantum ergo sacramentum’. Here the music changes pace in duple rather than triple time, though Guerrero still contrives, at first, to give the tune its long–short–long values.
from notes by Bruno Turner © 1999