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The publications of Pierre Attaignant from 1531 are some of the most important in the history of keyboard music, although the original arranger of the keyboard versions is unknown. Robert Bates has focused on the secular pieces, recording 40 chansons, branles, gaillardes and basse danses on a reconstructed 15-stop French renaissance organ in quarter-comma meantone temperament, together with added percussion instruments. With so many short pieces, Bates’s registrations are well varied and played with lively tempi, bold articulation and virtuoso embellishments, and the liner notes place the publications in their historical context. A fine collaboration between musicology, performance and historically-sensitive organ building.

DAVID PONSFORD Read the full review on Agora Classica


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