Las! pour vous trop aymer je ne vous puis aymer
Neufiesme Livre de Chansons, Le Roy & Ballard 1559
After Clereau, back to Certon. And you can hear the difference, even though this is Certon on good form! The homophony is more insistent, even though there are plenty of melismatic moments to break it up, and the word-setting is also a little less clever. And Certon seems to gain no inspiration for the opening self-contradiction in the poem – “I love you too much to love you properly” – which, to my mind, really ought to have generated some sort of musical gesture to underline it. (I don’t count a rising melody for the first half, and then a corresponding fall in the second half, as much of a gesture!) That said, Bertrand -the only other contemporary to set this text – also makes little of it …
A point of interest is the repeat at the end: a simple repeat for 3 of the voices, but the bass has an extra written-out half-line which varies his contribution the second time round, off-setting it from the other voices differently and making the return to the repeat sound comnpletely fresh. Here at least Certon shows his mastery of his art!