Peter Philips was probably born in London and as a young boy might have formed part of the St. Paul Cathedral choristers. In his lifetime, he was regarded as a leading British composer and his fame also spread to the continent.
His career was punctuated by a flight to Rome due to his Catholic faith and towards the end of the century he found himself in Antwerp where he fell victim to an intrigue and was imprisoned. Still, his genius could not be suppressed and in 1597, Archduke Albert VII named Phillips his principal court organist.
All the works on this disc are influenced by the Italian and Flemish schools, and the music is a source of pleasure throughout. The distinguished Siegbert Rampe performs on four of Europe's most celebrated historical keyboard instruments, and his playing, particularly on the St. Andrew's Church organ in ostonner and the instrument in St. Stephen's in Tangermünde on the River Elbe is flowingly precise and full of unbridled warmth. A reproduction of Jan Breughel's famous "Hearing" painting completes another valuable addition to this important cycle.
Copyright © 2008, Gerald Fenech