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CD Reviews

Five Mystical Songs CD Review – BBC Music Magazine

For many listeners the main attraction will be baritone Roderick Williams’s take on Vaughan Williams’s Five Mystical Songs, in a new version for organ accompaniment by Martin Ford. Williams is in sovereign form, noble and resonant in the opening ‘Easter’, plangent and intimate in ‘I Got Me Flowers’. In ‘The […]

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Five Mystical Songs CD Review – Roderick Williams

I’ve always enjoyed singing alongside the Vasari Singers ever since I was part of the team when they won BBC Choir of the Year. Friends that I made in the choir at that time, when I was just starting out on the London singing scene in the early 1990s, have […]

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Five Mystical Songs CD Review – MusicWeb International

I was delighted to receive this new CD from the Vasari Singers because I’ve admired a good number of their releases in the past. Though their recorded repertoire is wide, they’ve consistently demonstrated a propensity for British music, as is the case here. There are some very welcome selections in […]

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Rachmaninov: All-night Vigil – CD Review

***** This recording of Rachmaninov’s beautiful All-Night Vigil is the third by non-Russian choirs to come my way in less than a year. It’s good to report that the latest, from the Vasari Singers under Jeremy Backhouse, is every bit as excellent as we have come to expect from that […]

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Michael Hurd: Choral Music Vol.1 – CD Review

**** (4 stars) Michael Hurd’s Night Songs of Edward Thomas is the finest setting I’ve ever heard of that songful but somehow musically resistant poet. Thomas’s words call for very careful setting and singing, and the Vasaris do both composer and poet proud. There is a Missa brevis, too, which […]

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CD Review: Under the Shadow of His Wing – The Guardian

Seductively lush 4 out of 5 Stars Vasari Singers launch their own label with this wide-ranging, evocative double-CD meditation on the journey from darkness to light, a reworking of the Vespers service by Jonathan Rathbone, who takes texts from the liturgies of Compline and Evensong and applies double and sometimes […]

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Five fabulous reviews for Vasari’s ‘De Profundis’ CD

Gramophone The thesis of this disc isn’t a new one but it is always a welcome approach and has been originally addressed. It couples two settings of three texts – the *De Profundis*, the *Miserere* and the Requiem – in contrasting pairs. The most startling contrast, surprisingly, does not involve […]

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Filsell/Briggs: Choral Music – CD Review

This lovely CD was not at all what I expected. The image I had of church music was of a genre that is conventional and safe. Neither composer represented here falls into place on either count. I suspect many a church choir would see these pieces as very challenging. The […]

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© Jeremy Backhouse