Josquin des Pres made two settings of Psalm 130, both of which we offered last season. The one in five voices is grand; intricate, and concise, and concludes with an added Requiem text from the Mass for the Dead. The present version is simple and more expansive, even tuneful, and reminds us why Luther called his favorite composer “master of the notes.” Typical of Josquin is the accumulation of accumulation of drive and activity toward the end of each big section. Here also, additional text is added, this time a Doxology.
© John Harbison