Almost without exception this group of recordings features imaginative programmes and fine performances supported by strong complementary documents and the music ranges widely—from perfectly formed miniatures to a full-scale operatic masterpiece. On Moulinié, Boësset: L’air italien au temps de Louis XIII (Musica Ficta mf8014, rec 2011, 55′) the relaxed though far from bland singing of Dagmar Saskova and Francisco Javier Mañalich is a consistent pleasure and a comparatively rare outing for a Frescobaldi canzona per basso solo is very welcome. I do wonder, however, about the historical plausibility of some of the elaborate ensemble accompaniments and the appoggiatura that ends Boësset’s Non speri pieta sounds several decades ahead of its time. The liner notes offer French and English versions of the essay though the sung texts are translated from Italian to French only. This issue does not arise...

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