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Tom Moore
Fanfare, October 2000

"The performances here are first-rate, with an accomplished and idiomatic crew of soloists, and fine work from the band and chorus. These are still the only available recordings of three of the four motets. A real buy from Naxos. Warmly recommended."

William J. Gatens
American Record Guide, August 2000

" these motets, especially the ones for the royal funeral, there are moments that really do touch the heart. I think especially of the tenor solo at 'Oro supplex et acclinis' and the vocal ensemble at 'Lacrymosa dies illa' towards the end of 'Dies Irae.' There is a pathos here that seems more than just a pose.

"Herve Niquet founded Le Concert Spirituel in 1988 on the model of the institution begun by Philidor in 1725 to give concerts of sacred music, with grand motets a specialty. The vocal soloists are accomplished early-music specialists. The choir and period-instrument orchestra have a brilliant tone… Niquet seems to favor propulsive energy over stateliness and introspection, though the quieter sections are not without expressive delicacy. The sound is not at all churchly, but the styles of the court chapel and the court opera were not exactly poles apart. Well worth hearing."

Nicholas Anderson
BBC Music Magazine, June 2000

"The first volume of Le Concert Spirituel's recordings of Lully's 'grands motets' included his best-known sacred pieces, the Te Deum and the Miserere. Vol. 2 contains another of comparable merit, the Dies irae, as well as three other motets much less seldom encountered. A third volume will follow in due course, completing the most thoroughgoing survey to date of Lully's sacred music on disc. Director Herve Niquet achieves fluent and idiomatically stylish readings of these splendid pieces which are often colourfully evocative of our traditional image of the court of the Sun King. 'Grands motet' are multi-sectioned settings of psalms and canticles for solo voices, chorus and instruments...

Niquet has a strong solo line-up that includes soprano Veronique Gens, tenor Jean-Paul Fouchecourt and bass Peter Harvey."

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