Matheo Romero (Mathieu Rosmarin): Romances, Tonos humanos, Folνas, Letrillas, Canciones

“…Mateo Romero (or Matthieu Rosmarin, c1575-1647) is one of those composers who has fallen through the gaps of history, rather like his contemporary Peter Philips. Performances are rare and recordings have been sporadic, so this second disc of music by him from Ricercar is very welcome. Romero was born in Liège but left for Madrid at the age of 10 and studied with Philippe Rogier; though he thoroughly absorbed the Franco-Flemish contrapuntal agility of his master, works such as those collected here also show how completely he adopted the Spanish idiom. Leonardo García-Alarcón makes rather a point of this in his note on the music, as well as drawing attention to the continuity of this style in Latin America, where Romero’s works were widely known, even to the point of noting the resemblance between the composer’s Aquella hermosa aldeana to the anonymous Peruvian Hanacpachap cuisicuinin, which is undeniable.
There is, in fact, something of a Latin-American exuberance about many of the performances here, with plenty of use of vihuelas and percussion: Romerico florido is a particularly successful example and an excellent vehicle for the lovely voice of Mariana Flores. Whether it is exactly appropriate is one of those questions that one ought to ask but which seems ultimately irrelevant in the face of the revelation of such fine music, superbly recorded…” (from

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