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Gustav Leonhardt - Byrd: Harpsichord Music (Alpha Collection)

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Byrd: Harpsichord Music (Alpha Collection)

Gustav Leonhardt

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If the Alpha label had done nothing more than return Gustav Leonhardt to the studio, it would still be one of the best contemporary classical record companies. That everything else about its releases -- the sound, the liner notes, even the reproductions on the covers -- is as good or better than what any other classical company manages is only icing on the cake. Leonhardt has been one of the finest harpsichordists in the world for more than 40 years, and his recordings of the repertoire from Frescobaldi to Bach have been the standards against which all other recordings have been judged. But Leonhardt had made no recordings for most of the last decade, and listeners began to wonder if he ever would again. Now, with his fourth release for Alpha, listeners can finally relax, confident in the knowledge that Leonhardt has indeed returned. This 2005 disc of keyboard music by Byrd finds Leonhardt at the top of his form. As always, his technique is secure, and nothing in Byrd's virtuoso writing is beyond him. And, as always, his musicianship is assured, and nothing in Byrd's sensitive music is beyond him. Leonhardt's Pavanes are stately yet soulful, his Galliards are exciting yet playful, his character pieces are amusing yet graceful, and his closing Fantasia is controlled yet colorful. If one could have a complaint about this disc, it is that at 52 minutes, it might seem too short. But so full of delight and wonder are Leonhardt's performances that only a curmudgeon would dare criticize them.
© TiVo

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Byrd: Harpsichord Music (Alpha Collection)

Gustav Leonhardt

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1
Pavan, BK 16a
00:05:15

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

2
Galliard, BK 16b
00:01:31

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

3
Clarifica me, Pater (III), BK 49
00:02:58

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

4
Qui passe for my Lady Nevell, BK 19
00:03:51

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

5
Alman, BK 89
00:01:42

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

6
Pavan, BK 14a
00:05:21

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

7
Galliard, BK 14b
00:01:35

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

8
La Volta, BK 91
00:01:18

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

9
Pavan, BK 23a
00:05:29

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

10
Galliard, BK 23b
00:01:41

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

11
Ut re mi fa sol la, BK 64
00:07:32

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

12
Ground, BK 43
00:03:13

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

13
Rowland, or Lord Willoughby’s Welcome Home, BK 7
00:02:46

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

14
Fantasia, BK 13
00:07:54

William BYRD, Composer - Gustav Leonhardt, MainArtist

Alpha Classics / Outhere Music France Alpha

Album Description

If the Alpha label had done nothing more than return Gustav Leonhardt to the studio, it would still be one of the best contemporary classical record companies. That everything else about its releases -- the sound, the liner notes, even the reproductions on the covers -- is as good or better than what any other classical company manages is only icing on the cake. Leonhardt has been one of the finest harpsichordists in the world for more than 40 years, and his recordings of the repertoire from Frescobaldi to Bach have been the standards against which all other recordings have been judged. But Leonhardt had made no recordings for most of the last decade, and listeners began to wonder if he ever would again. Now, with his fourth release for Alpha, listeners can finally relax, confident in the knowledge that Leonhardt has indeed returned. This 2005 disc of keyboard music by Byrd finds Leonhardt at the top of his form. As always, his technique is secure, and nothing in Byrd's virtuoso writing is beyond him. And, as always, his musicianship is assured, and nothing in Byrd's sensitive music is beyond him. Leonhardt's Pavanes are stately yet soulful, his Galliards are exciting yet playful, his character pieces are amusing yet graceful, and his closing Fantasia is controlled yet colorful. If one could have a complaint about this disc, it is that at 52 minutes, it might seem too short. But so full of delight and wonder are Leonhardt's performances that only a curmudgeon would dare criticize them.
© TiVo

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