The early music ensemble Gallicantus was born within the ranks of the world-class choir Tenebrae, when five of the choir’s regulars, each with a wealth of experience in the world of consort singing, decided to form a separate group dedicated to renaissance music. Literally meaning Rooster Song or cock crow, Gallicantus is a word from monastic antiquity for the office held just before the dawn. It evokes the renewal of life offered by the coming day.
The group is bound by a shared love of communicating text, and is committed to creating performances which draw out unifying themes within apparently diverse repertoire: to this end they are as meticulous about providing context and insight for audiences as they are about crafting interpretations of the music they love.
"Luminous performances of sublime Tudor-period music." "What an outstanding disc."
"Gabriel Crouch’s group Gallicantus (eight male voices) sing on their first CD with a rapture and clarity made to measure for the Tudor church music of Robert White. Throughout the 16th century, White composed to mostly Latin texts: psalm motets, hymns, Lamentations settings, all sounding radiant in the warm and lively church acoustic. Taste the final amens in Exaudiat te, Dominus, where imitative exchanges spiral in ecstasy. Impassioned, exciting music."
"What better respite from the secular pressures of Christmas shopping than these sublime sacred sounds from the late 16th century. White’s Lamentations are not as famous as Tallis’s, but their plangent harmonies and clashing lines have an equal intensity. This impressive debut disc by Gallicantus (an all-male group from the Tenebrae choir) includes White’s motets and hymns, emphasising his response to the texts and his eloquent way with the single Hebrew letters that begin each Lamentation. The vocal balance is slightly bass-heavy, but the sound is beautifully recorded."