01 April 2012

Les Voix Baroques: Canticum Canticorum

Easy CD-DA | FLAC tracks | Covers | 333 Mb
Date CD: 2008 | Atma Classique | 69:00
“The performances are notable for their sonorous beauty and musical refinement, matching the sensuality (sometimes veiled, sometimes impassioned) of their varied and captivating program.... A fascinating and beguiling disc." - 5 stars - Uri Golomb , Goldberg Magazine, April 2008
This programming concept isn't new--works based on texts from the biblical Song of Songs--but with ensemble singing this good and musical selections of this high caliber, who cares? The one thing that may be original is the particularly interesting mix of old and new, a range that incorporates Dunstable and Lassus as well as the 20th century's Healey Willan and William Walton.
But it's the singing that's the real star here. These six singers--Dorothee Mields, Catherine Webster, Matthew White, Colin Balzer, Sumner Thompson, and Robert Macdonald--sometimes accompanied by baroque strings and winds, sometimes not, are all experienced artists and veterans of some of the world's finest vocal groups and performing venues. All matters of ensemble precision, balance, blend, phrasing, and expressive articulation come naturally to them, whether it's Purcell (My beloved spake) or Palestrina (Osculetur me osculo oris sui). The two Willan selections--the Marian motets Rise up, my love, my fair one, and I beheld her, beautiful as a dove--are exquisite little gems well known to Canadian choirs but deserving of far greater attention elsewhere; it's nice to hear them in these sensitively sung, one-voice-to-a-part renditions. Other highlights are Walton's lovely marriage motet from 1938, Set me as a seal upon thine heart, and Dunstable's Quam pulchra es, sung here by three ideally matched male voices.
The instrumental accompaniments (and one ensemble-only selection--a Passacaille by Marin Marais) are first-rate, consistently complementary to the voices, and everything is expertly captured in the agreeable acoustic of Quebec's Église Saint-Augustin. Liner notes by François Filiatrault are thoughtful and informative, adding helpful background to understanding the program's choices and purpose. Strongly recommended! David Vernier,
The sonics of this ATMA Classique recording are pristine and crystalline. The entire set possesses a Renaissance oil portrait patina, even in the more recent compositions. But this is not a dusty or dank patina. It is vibrant and colorful, sensual and pious. This may be the "classical" recording of the year.
1 - Veni in hortum meum by Orlando de Lassus
2 - Osculetur me osculo oris sui by Giovanni Palestrina
3 - Symphoniae sacrae, Op. 6
Anima mea liquefacta est, SWV 263 by Heinrich Schütz
4 - Symphoniae sacrae, Op. 6
Adjuro vos, filiae, SWV 264 by Heinrich Schütz
5 - Dialogo della cantica by Domenico Mazzocchi
6 - Rise up, my love, my fair one, B 314 by Healey Willan
7 - I beheld her beautiful as a dove, B 312 by Healey Willan
8 - Set me as a seal upon thine heart by Sir William Walton
9 - My beloved spake unto me by Thomas Tomkins
10 - Cantiones sacrae, Op. 4
Ego dormio, et cor meum, SWV 63 by Heinrich Schütz
11 - Cantiones sacrae, Op. 4
Vulnerasti cor meum, SWV 64 by Heinrich Schütz
12 - Dilecti mi, H 436 by Marc-Antoine Charpentier
13 - Passacaille by Marin Marais
14 - Antienne pour les Vêpres de l’Assomption de la vierge: Après Lauda Jerusalem Dominum, H 52 by Marc-Antoine Charpentier
15 - Quam pulchra es, MB 44 by John Dunstable
16 - My beloved spake, Z 28 by Henry Purcell
I'm beginning here to resurrect some of the works that "disappeared" from Avax or were "abandoned" from the original uploaders. There's not a real thought behind it, I'm just cleaning up my HDs and following the wind. What I downloaded long ago is flowing back. All credits go to the first uploader. Enjoy...

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Mediocre music, but great tits!