Vocal Music of the Trecento

Con voce quasi humana
Vocal Music of the Trecento
Ensemble Perlaro - Lorenza Donadini
Raum Klang 3501

This is an interesting, and relatively broad program of Trecento music, seemingly not so different in its repertory priorities than those of various others (including on this list). So it's a fairly generic program, albeit with several highlights. What sets it apart is the all-vocal performance.

I've enjoyed many all-vocal performances of music from this era, paradigmatically starting with Gothic Voices, but I've also never considered them to be the only — or even necessarily best — approach. Such misgivings were especially true for the Italian repertory, particularly as Gothic Voices was rather stiff in this material (to pick on them again, I guess). However, despite some initial misgivings (and these might have derived, at least in part, from my irritation at having not heard of this recording until a year or so after it appeared) including about the resonant recording space, I've come to find this all-vocal survey to be enjoyable & worthwhile, especially as an alternative. Some of the voice parts can still sound a little awkward at times, but there begins to be a real coherence & greater sense of affectivity....

Although I'm (still) not advocating for exclusivity — or anything close — this is a real step forward in all-vocal performance of Trecento music (adding to many excellent individual tracks on other programs, that is).

To medieval secular list

Todd M. McComb
Updated: 19 April 2020