Anonymous 4, The Origin of Fire: Music and Visions of Hildegard von Bingen

Rod Smith

By Rod Smith

on 04.22.11 in Reviews
She might have been a prude, but ol’ Hildegarde of Bingen knew a little something about ecstasy.

Like most 12th-century nuns, the visionary polymath (1098-1179) Hildegarde of Bingen frowned hard on non-marital hanky-panky. But she wrote extensively about sex from a woman's perspective, a first for her era even minus what might have been the first first-hand description of a female orgasm. (Oh, those mystics!) Thank Satan, Anonymous 4 couldn't give a hoot about how we deploy their tribute to history's first named composer. The quartet's diaphanous renditions of Bingen's ecstatic hymns and visions leave absolutely everything to even the most naughtypants imagination.