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Je ne chant pas/Talens m'est pris/APTATUR/OMNES

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This four-part piece reminds us that there is no such thing as a typical motet. The contrast between the chattering Triplum and the slower-moving Motetus is a text-book feature of the motet genre, as are the overlapping phrases, yet here they are combined with two Tenors! This piece also shows how the speed of the Tenor relative to the upper parts affects the impetus and indeed the entire character of a motet, for here the Tenors move rapidly, constantly repeating the same six measures of music, giving the piece a considerable thrust. The four-part motets of the thirteenth century have often been regarded as imperfect, over-ambitious works; this recording, which features a high proportion of such pieces, is an attempt to rehabilitate the four-part motet.

from notes by Christopher Page 1990


The Marriage of Heaven and Hell


Track 1 on CDH55273 [2'19]

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