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MESSIAEN, O.: Livre du Saint Sacrement (P. Jacobs)

Composer(s):Messiaen, Olivier
Artist(s) Jacobs, Paul, organ
Period(s) 20th Century
Genre Classical Music
Category Instrumental
Catalogue 8.572436-37
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
Download and Stream

Livre du Saint-Sacrement (The Book of the Blessed Sacrament) is Messiaen’s last and longest organ work, a thematic cycle based on the sacrament of Communion comprising eighteen movements, many based on his recorded improvisations, arranged into three thematic groups. Hailed for his prodigious technique, vivid interpretive imagination and charismatic showmanship, Paul Jacobs is widely acknowledged for reinvigorating the American organ scene with a fresh performance style and ‘an unbridled joy of music-making’ (Baltimore Sun). He has performed the complete organ works of Olivier Messiaen in nine-hour marathons in eight American cities.

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Review By Paul de Louit,Diapason,August 2011


Review By Dominy Clements,MusicWeb International,November 2010

This is one of those rare pieces, an organ work which has almost literally everything. It’s one of my favourites, and Jennifer Bate’s premiere recording, originally on Unicorn-Kanchana and now part of the complete set on Regis, is pretty much inscribed onto my aural DNA. There are numerous noble recordings of this great work around, but it is to Bate’s I always return, so that is my principal reference.

Paul Jacobs is clearly a highly skilled organist…. The later French master Olivier Messiaen is very well served by this Naxos recording, and if it’s only the Livre du Saint-Sacrement you are looking for then this bargain release can hold its own amongst the best.

Review By John Terauds,Toronto Star,September 2010

American organist Paul Jacobs is such a phenomenal talent, not only technically but in how he manages to coax every conceivable colour out of any instrument he confronts. The man who became head of the organ faculty at the Juilliard School at the age of 27 (in 2004) has made a specialty of the music of Olivier Messiaen (1908-1992). Here, in a two-CD set, he presents the pinnacle of Messiaen’s contribution to the organ repertoire, the Book of the Holy Sacrament, 18 meditations he completed in 1984 that transcend time, space, sound and conventional notions of musical narrative. As titular organist at the Church of the Holy Trinity in Paris, Messiaen’s output is directly tied to the Roman Catholic Mass as well has his own deep spirituality. Jacobs recorded this



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