Wednesday, 21 November 2007

6. Antoine Busnoys - Motets (Late 15th Century)


Title: Busnois - Missa L'homme armé / Donarto - Missa Spritus Almus
Performer: Binchois Consort
Director: Andrew Kirkman
Year: 2001
Length: 12 minutes


This is a review of a very short portion of a recording, this recording has only two Busnoys (or Busnois) motets, they are pretty, but just a little morsel, it is hard to have an overarching notion of Busnoys work from these two tracks.

Still the tracks are in two quite different styles, one is much sombre than the other and this contrast gives you an idea of the range of Antoine Busnoys, but if compared to Dufay's motets reviewed here yesterday, these pale in comparison.

Firstly the motets are only vocal, there is no instrumentation, this is no problem in itself and is a perfectly legitimate performance, but the instrumentation in Dufay was so great that I miss it here. Still, on their own merits these are two lovely pieces of music.

Track Highlights

1. Gaudi Celestis Domina
2. Anima Mea Liquefacta Est

Final Grade



From Wikipedia:

Of his sacred music, two cantus firmus masses and eight motets survive (most likely many others are lost). He wrote several settings of the Marian antiphon Regina coeli. Stylistically, his music can be heard as a mid-point between the simplicity and homophonic textures of Dufay and Binchois, and the pervading imitation of Josquin and Gombert. He uses imitation skillfully but occasionally, writes smooth and singable melodic lines, and has a strong feeling for triadic sonorities, anticipating 16th-century practice.

Some secular music by Busnois:

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