Miserere mihi, Domine, et exaudi orationem meam.
Have mercy upon me, O Lord, and hearken unto my prayer.
The penitential chant Miserere mihi, Domine is the Psalm antiphon for Sunday Compline, Cardoso set this Mass using it as the Cantus Firmus. As with other Portugese sacred polyphony from the first half of the seventeenth century it's rather old-fashioned in some ways. It reminds me of Victoria's work full of sonority and with enough musical variation in the longer passages to maintain interest. Despite being such a conservative work inspired by the Renaissance and Palestrina you can hear throughout the work some of the new harmonic ideas of the Baroque and it is this skilful juxtapositioning of the old and the new that give this Mass its very considerable appeal. It's performed below by the Ensemble Vocal Européen directed by Philippe Herreweghe.