Phantasm – Christopher Tye: Complete Consort Music (2017) [Hyperion FLAC 24bit/96kHz]

Christopher Tye – Complete Consort Music – Phantasm (2017) 
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/96 kHz  | Time – 01:07:13 minutes | 1,2 GB | Genre: Classical
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: | Booklet, Front Cover | © Linn Records

This latest recording from the award-winning viol consort focuses on an important composer and radical thinker from the sixteenth century, the Englishman Christopher Tye. Tye is especially bold in his metrical and harmonic experiments embraced within his mystical but surprisingly approachable instrumental works. There are pieces depicting the biblical Rachel weeping for her children, an In Nomine counted in lengths of five beats (unheard of before the nineteenth century) and obsessional works – such as Sit Fast – which test the rhythmic skills of musicians with passages of dizzyingly modernist metrical complexity.
Phantasm take a radically different approach to previous recordings, delivering a performance that brings out the music’s ceaseless energy, rhythmic articulation, and provocative harmonies – in short, one that highlights Tye’s insights as music for today. Phantasm will perform works by Christopher Tye at Berlin’s Marienkirche and London’s Wigmore Hall in September and October 2017 respectively.

A contemporary of Tallis and Sheppard, Christopher Tye was a composer apart. His ear for harmony, his eye for a musical line, seem to have been guided by a different logic to those around him. There’s no doubting his architect’s instinct for musical form but his architecture is more Frank Gehry than Inigo Jones – wilful, playful, iconoclastic and often as baffling as it is beautiful. This collection of his complete consort music throws up surprise after surprise – a revelation of a recording that offers a startling perspective on a familiar musical landscape. Other recordings of this music do exist – notably Fretwork’s ‘In nomine’ (Amon Ra, 3/88) and the rather lovely ‘Crye’ by Concordia Viols (Metronome, 12/97) – often pairing Tye’s works for viol consort with those of Taverner, Tallis and Byrd. But to hear these pieces back to back, one after another as here, is to really get inside this extraordinary imagination, to be caught up short by musical blind alleys and hairpin bends of a composer who not only invented the characteristically English genre of the In nomine but who also took it further than almost any of his later imitators.
Phantasm’s craggy, deep-dug performances follow the composer’s instructive titles – ‘Hold fast’, ‘Follow me’, ‘Believe me’ – to the letter, gamely celebrating the oddities as well as the felicities of works whose fixation with 54 notes of plainchant by John Taverner (taken from the Benedictus of his Missa Gloria tibi Trinitas) has never fully been explained. Discovering the unexpected sensuality of the In nomine ‘Round’, the yelping, insistent plaints of the In nomine ‘Cry’ and the provocative dramatics of the In nomine ‘Re la re’, Phantasm are skilled musical tour guides to Tye’s challenging terrain. — Alexandra Coghlan “Gramophone”


01 – In nomine a4
02 – In nomine Trust
03 – In nomine Rachel s weeping
04 – Dum transisset Sabbatum I
05 – Laudes Deo
06 – In nomine Free from all
07 – In nomine Round
08 – In nomine Weep no more Rachel
09 – In nomine Say so
10 – In nomine Follow me
11 – Christus resurgens
12 – In nomine Cry
13 – Rubum quem
14 – In nomine Hold fast
15 – In nomine Seldom seen
16 – In nomine Re la re
17 – Dum transisset Sabbatum III
18 – Sit fast prima et secunda pars
19 – In nomine Surrexit non est hic
20 – In nomine Believe me
21 – In nomine Report
22 – In nomine a5
23 – In nomine I come
24 – Dum transisset Sabbatum II
25 – O lux beata Trinitas
26 – In nomine My death bed
27 – In nomine Blameless
28 – In nomine Farewell my good one forever
29 – Dum transisset Sabbatum IV
30 – Amavit eum Dominus
31 – In nomine a6