Derek Adlam proves his virtuosity here with a marvellous and characterful collection of works for various instruments by the forgotten composers, John Bull (1562/3-1628) and Giles Farnaby (c.1563-1640).
The long 'Walsingham' by Bull is splendidly done, this is nineteen minutes of beauty and revered invention on all counts. 'In Nomine' and 'Salvator Mundi' are also important pieces that demonstrate Bull's capacity for turning out profound imagery in a miniaturist form.
The muselar is used to excellent effect in Giles Farnaby's 'Fantasy' whilst the harpsichord returns with 'Woody Cock' by Farnaby and Bull's interesting 'Variations'. Finally there are more pieces for muselar and others for harpsichord that also show Adlam as a sympathetic interpreter of the wide variety of music on offer.
The variation of material is intriguing and also offers scope for further rediscoveries in this area after Hyperion's monumental survey of Byrd's keyboard music. Guild provides fine and readable notes and also include some useful diagrams of the instruments used. A fine issue in the rather neglected English keyboard repertoire.
Copyright © 2002, Gerald Fenech