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This release is a worthy tribute to the pioneering recordings (1972-76) of French baroque organ music made by André Isoir (1935-2016). The focus is the two Couperin Organ Masses, but also included are pieces by Jullien, d’Anglebert and Titelouze, and harpsichord pieces by Louis Couperin, all recorded on modern organs. Since 1976, editions, organ restorations and knowledge of performance practices have all advanced considerably, and although undeniably musical, Isoir’s playing is more characteristically personal rather than authoritative, with exaggerated tempi, random inégalité, and no real cognisance of the influence on the organ music of Italian string music or of French dances. Historically interesting, though.

DAVID PONSFORD Read the full review on Agora Classica


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