STYLE: Choral RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 9572- LABEL: Naxos 8555772 FORMAT: CD Album RRP: £4.99
Reviewed by Steven Whitehead
Juan de Anchieta was one of the leading Spanish composers of sacred music of his day, working in the courts of Henry IV of Castile, Queen Isabella the Catholic, Prince Don Juan and, finally, Joanna the Mad and her husband Philip the Fair of Burgundy. His position at court involved a number of journeys, notably to Brussels with Pierre De La Rue, and even a stop in England when the royal fleet was detained. So an interesting life but does the music keep our attention? It is very much of its time and place, a fact picked up on by Naxos as the CD is labelled as both "Spanish Classic" and "Early Music". Not all 17 pieces are by Anchieta. There are two by Des Près and several by "Anon". The whole gives a musical illustration of a service in the Spanish court. Capilla Peñaflorida sing very well and the accompaniment from Ministriles de Marsias sounds authentic to my ears. Those who enjoy a Gregorian chill-out may like to try the real thing and those who like early music will fill some gaps in their collection for a very reasonable cost.
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