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Classical - Released November 5, 2021 | Ricercar

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Jean-Marie Leclair's Violin Sonatas were published in four volumes between 1723 and 1743. David Plantier here presents a selection of Sonatas from the final three opus numbers of the collection. The consistent quality of Leclair’s forty-eight sonatas, collected in four volumes, is admirable, whilst the collection as a whole is a monumental contribution to the repertoire and to posterity; few of Leclair’s followers were able to combine innovation in violin technique and wealth of inspiration with so much talent. Leclair’s taste, refinement, skill and refusal of all artifice enabled him to make his mark not merely on his own time but on the history of music as a whole. © Ricercar
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Classical - Released October 15, 2021 | Ricercar

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Marin Marais published his Quatrième Livre de pièces de viole two years after the death of Louis XIV, establishing himself as the undisputed master of the genre and providing pieces not only for musicians who had achieved some skill on the viol but also for the most virtuoso players. Here Marais reshaped the classical forms, altering the traditional sequence for the suites and making an increasing use of character pieces. The sometimes whimsical imagery and the new freedom of form that these pieces contain reach their peak in the astonishing Suitte d'un goût étranger; these thirty or so pieces employ as yet unheard-of keys and offer a multitude of characters and representations that can tend towards the exotic. Breaking further new ground, and somewhat influenced by the Italian trio, Marais ended the Quatrième Livre with two suites for three viols, a genre he claimed to be new to France. © Ricercar
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Classical - Released October 1, 2021 | Ricercar

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For this second part of his anthology of seventeenth-century German harpsichord music, Yoann Moulin takes as his starting point the famous competition organised when Weckmann and Froberger met at the court of Dresden. It was in the 1650s that the influences of the French style were grafted onto models drawn from Italian music. The compositions of this period appear to us in their infinite variety, as illustrated here by the notion of "stylus luxurians". © Ricercar
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Classical - Released September 3, 2021 | Ricercar

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Pierre-Gabriel Buffardin, a French-born flautist, was active at the court of Dresden. He is known to have been the teacher of Johann Joachim Quantz and a friend of Johann Sebastian Bach, who wrote a few concertante arias for him in his cantatas. He was considered one of the greatest virtuosos of his time. This recording is the world premiere of a recently discovered collection of sonatas. Accompanied by the Concerto à cinq parties, these sonatas represent for the flautist Olivier Riehl and the ensemble Le Petit Trianon a recreational area conducive to enjoyment, combining virtuosity, energy and expressiveness to produce a recording rich in colour and novelty. © Ricercar
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Classical - Released August 27, 2021 | Ricercar

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If there is one student of Johann Sebastian Bach whom posterity has definitely not forgotten, it is Johann Gottlieb Goldberg. However, he owes this destiny to his position as harpsichordist to Count Keyserling: during the latter’s bouts of insomnia, it was Goldberg’s task to play for him the famous variations that he had commissioned from the Leipzig Kantor. This has probably long obscured the fact that Goldberg was also an excellent composer. Aside from his only two surviving cantatas (already recorded by Ricercar), his output is essentially instrumental, and the genre of the trio sonata occupies an appreciable place within it. Here are his complete trio sonatas, along with a sonata in C major at one time attributed to Johann Sebastian Bach (BWV 1037). © Ricercar
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Classical - Released June 4, 2021 | Ricercar

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It's always a wonderful thing when a dream-team of artists resurrects and ravishingly records lesser-known repertoire, and that's precisely what we have here from Leonardo García Alarćon's Capella Mediterranea, joined by sopranos Mariana Flores and Julie Roset. Alive roughly between 1582 and 1629, musician-courtesan Sigismondo d'India was writing just as the late Renaissance style gave way to the early Baroque, and in parallel with Monteverdi he was a key figure in developing that new musical language – one which broke free of the fixed rules of polyphony, and moved instead towards monodies in a more mannered style whose raison d'être was to express heightened emotion; D'India then consolidated that new, intensely expressive way of writing in the five books of accompanied monodies he produced between 1609 and 1623. And if all that sounds a bit textbook, the bottom line is that the selection of madrigal-esque accompanied pieces for one or two sopranos Alarcon has presented over this generous two-disc programme plunge the listener into such a world of silence-imbued, soulful melancholic beauty and contemplation that, once you've dived in, re-surfacing feels thoroughly painful. Of course it's Flores and Roset who play the starring roles in all this magic. In tonal quality alone they've been brilliantly cast, their respective ethereally pure voices a perfect match both for each other and for the music, Flores's tones just a shade softer and darker than those of Roset. Then there's their warmly expressive readings of the texts, and the technical control and colouristic nuance of their embellishments as they gently float their lines. Essentially, you're mere seconds into their curtain-raising duet, Ardo, lassa, o non ardo?, when you've clocked that this is album is a gold-plated keeper. Meanwhile the sensitive support from Cappella Mediterranea – appearing here in a chamber subset of lute, theorbo, harp and viola da gamba, led by Alarćon at the harpsichord and organ – is exquisitely delicate, lucid-textured and seductively shaped; tone-setting and responsive in equal measure, they've given Flores and Roset everything they need to bounce off. Listen to any one of these tracks in isolation and you'll give yourself a precious few minutes of contemplative bliss, but I'd be surprised if one proves to be enough. Essentially, this is an album to lose yourself in. © Charlotte Gardner/Qobuz
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Classical - Released May 21, 2021 | Ricercar

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Born in Leuze (Hainaut) around 1430, Johannes Martini was initially active in Konstanz, then in Milan and Ferrara, where he died on 23 October 1497. Closely connected with the d’Este family, he was paid in 1479 for the production of a large volume of vocal music for the ducal chapel of Ferrara. He is also the key contributor to the Casanatense Chansonnier, which was compiled for the marriage of Isabella d’Este to Gianfrancesco II Gonzaga in 1490. Thanks to these collections, we can for the first time present a glimpse of the immense output (motets, psalms, mass movements, chansons, instrumental chansons) of one of the most refined composers of the generation before Josquin’s. &copty; Ricercar
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Classical - Released April 9, 2021 | Ricercar

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Alessandro Scarlatti’s Sonate a quattro were published in 1725, the year of his death. With their specific marking "senza cembalo" (without harpsichord), these compositions for two violins, viola and cello appear to be, in a sense, the first string quartets in the modern sense of the term. The programme is completed by a few sonatas by his brother Francesco, the "London Scarlatti", and Alessandro’s son Domenico, who had so thoroughly absorbed the contrapuntal tradition instilled in him by his father that some of his sonatas can also be played in quartet formation. (© Ricercar)
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Classical - Released March 19, 2021 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released February 12, 2021 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released January 8, 2021 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released November 20, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released November 13, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released October 30, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released October 2, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released September 25, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released September 18, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released August 21, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released August 14, 2020 | Ricercar

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Classical - Released August 14, 2020 | Ricercar

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