This is one of Byrd’s rarer short ‘8-bar’ pavans. Normally, therefore, both the pavan and its galliard would be expected to run to 48 semibreves each and have six 8-bar sections. However, the galliard here has four strains, of 8, 8, 4 and 4 bars (each repeated), so the overall length is the same despite the internal organisation being different. The same procedure may be seen in only one other Byrd galliard, the one that follows The fourth pavian in the Nevell
sequence (BK30b). The present pair is in Dorian G minor. The three strains of the pavan, unusually, all start on chords of G, although the galliard has a more varied tonal scheme, with the second strain starting on F (emphasising the Dorian character). These works show some stylistic similarities with the more leisurely B flat major pavan and galliard pair (BK23), despite the pavan here being of the ‘8-bar’ variety.
from notes by Davitt Moroney © 1999