John Jenkins: Consort Music of Four Parts

John Jenkins: Consort Music of Four Parts

by Spirit of Gambo

CD

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Overview

John Jenkins: Consort Music of Four Parts

The name of the Spirit of Gambo viol consort comes from an old manuscript referring to the viola da gamba as a "Gambo Violl." It is interesting that absolutely nothing in the packaging of this release, at least in its U.S. version, identifies the ensemble as being from Chicago, or America at all. Be that as it may, the group delivers strong performances of some pieces that have been somewhat neglected within the viol consort repertoire. John Jenkins, who lived through the musically difficult Commonwealth and emerged venerated in old age, followed in the footsteps of Byrd's music for viol consort but greatly expanded its harmonic vocabulary. Part of the interest of English viol consort music lies in the way it simultaneously remains independent of vocal models -- it is one of the first long traditions of purely abstract instrumental music -- while still reflecting wider developments. Jenkins seems to have known the harmonic experiments coming from Italy during the 16th century, for these fantasies for viols circle through sequences of distantly related keys, all without losing the atmosphere of refined melancholy that is at the heart of the viol consort experience. The Spirit of Gambo executes these transitions smoothly without seeming overwrought, and the viols, modern copies of 17th century instruments made by Dutch builder Gesina Liedmeier. The gut strings have a lively, human-like quality. Jenkins is not the very first composer to sample if you're interested in viol music (that would be Purcell), but this is a good choice for those looking to investigate more deeply.

Product Details

Release Date: 07/26/2011
Label: Musica Ficta
UPC: 5410939801121
catalogNumber: 8011
Rank: 168194

Tracks

  1. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 16
  2. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 2
  3. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 15
  4. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 8
  5. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 11
  6. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 13
  7. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 14
  8. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 3
  9. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 6
  10. Fantasy for 4 instruments No. 7

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