Music of the Middle Ages
An Anthology for Performance and Study by
David Fenwick Wilson
ISBN 0-02-872952-8 Schirmer Books
Part IX The Continental Motet in the Fourteenth Century
1. Guillaume de Machaut - Quant en moy/Amour et biaute/Amara valde (Isorrhythmic motet)
2. Guillaume de Machaut - De bon espoir/Puis que la douce/Speravi (Isorhythmic motet)
The Hilliard Ensemble
Isorhythm (from the Greek for "the same rhythm") is a musical technique that arranges a fixed pattern of pitches with a repeating rhythmic pattern.
Isorhythm consists of an order of durations or rhythms, called a talea ("cutting", plural taleae), which is repeated within a tenor melody whose pitch content or series, called the color (repetition), varied in the number of members from the talea. The term was coined in 1904 by Friedrich Ludwig (1903–04, 223) to describe this practice in 13th century polyphonic motets, but it later became more widely applied, especially to periodic repetition or rhythmic recurrence in tenors and other parts of 14th- and early 15th-century compositions, motets in particular (Bent 2001).