VARIOUS CLASSICAL TITLES, p. 2 of 2

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SWEET WAS THE SONG - Owain Phyfe/Ens. Josquin - C-25 CD $15
Subtitled "Lute Songs Revisited." Includes works of Dowland, Holborne, Josquin, Isaac, Frescobaldi, Milan & Anon. Gramophone said: A beautiful collection of 15th and 16th-century songs in interesting arrangements. Phyfe has a fabulous voice... Colorado Public Radio said: Never have you heard early music done in such a refreshing and genuine fashion.. Also lute solos & duets. Nightwatch label.

 

VIVALDI: The Four Seasons - Percussion Project Rostock - C-26 CD $20
There are many versions of Vivaldi's pot-boiler but this phenomenal transcription is the first one for five marimbas! They're spread out in front of you. The seasoned (sorry!) percussionists of Percussion Project Rostock have been exulted by the German press for their masterly skills. Their masterly melodic skills and remarkable rhythmic precision will leave you breathless! The crisp transient attacks of hammers on wood bars lend an amazingly accurate localization to the various sounds, yet the reverberant acoustics of the cathedral in which the recording was made palpably surrounds you in all directions. KlangRaume label.

 

Pasión Española - C-27 CD $24   
A very satisfying Spanish guitar recital by the noted German guitarist Thomas Karstens. Program: Aguado: Fandango; Narvaez: O Gloriosa Domina; Pujol: 3 Pieces; Sor: Les Folies d'Espagne; Ponce: Sonatina meridional; Gnattali: 4 Estudios. 96kHz sampling DAT master puts the guitarist right in the recital hall in front of you. Neumann KU-100 dummy head recording imported from the Abadone label.

 

 

There is a Flower- C-28 - $16
An A Cappella Christmas with Windgate, a nine-member vocal ensemble based in Metro Atlanta. Their program of 23 separate tracks emphasizes less frequently-heard Christmas music. Lovely choral sound on both headphones and matrix surround systems. Director John Black feels that a cappella choral music can provide a clear window into the soul of others. Such favorites as the title carol, I Saw Three Ships and Deck the Hall, along with less frequently heard items such as Iona, The Crown of Roses, and Poverty. Complete translations of each song. KU-100 Neumann head and 96 kHz DAT, no processing or editing. Listen for the sound of crickets on the closing piece. Listeners will receive an audio impression of being in the hall with the singers; especially good frontal imaging.

 

Sounds of the Season - C-29 - $17
This is the fourth binaural recording of a full symphony orchestra which we have offered - an all-instrumental holiday program including choices that are listenable all year long. Includes: Chadwick: Noel; Tchaikovsky: Dance of the Buffoons; Gould: Skier's Waltz; Festive Sounds of Chanukah and others. Felix Resnick conducting the Birmingham-Bloomfield Symphony. An Aachen Head Acoustics system recording.

 

 

Songs to the Moon - C-30 - $25   
Lieder an den Mond is a recital by lieder specialist Florian Prey, baritone, accompanied by pianist Birgitta Eila. A dozen Franz Schubert lieder include Der Wanderer, Sehnsucht, and An den Mond; also 11 lieder by the contemporary Finnish composer Yjrö Kilpinen. The often very specific musical commentary in the piano accompaniment on the lyrics of the lieder are pointed up in bold relief by the binaural separation of instrument and singer. A wonderful recital for lieder-lovers and those partial to the rich baritone voice. You are sitting in the front row! Recorded with the Aachen Head system for Projekt Freies Kunsthaus Production.

 

Johannes Brahms: A German Requiem (complete, in English) - C-31 - $17
One of the most melodically lovely of well-known masses, this is one of the monuments of choral/orchestral literature. Hearing the words in English serves the same purpose Brahms had in mind in calling his work "A German Requiem for All People." Milton Olsson conducts the Keweenaw Symphony and KSO Festival Chorus with soloists Gabrielyn Watson and Will Nichols. The Aachen Head recording was aided by minimal spot miking on the soloists while still maintaining the 360 degree perspective.


Singing the Mystery - Hildegard Revisited - Composed by June Boyce Tillman-- C-32 - $18
Hildegard von Bingen brought together in her 12th century life the arts, spirituality, theology and healing. Some of the music and words of her 77 songs and other writings are used by Boyce-Tillman in her six original compositions performed here by soloists, the GAP Choir dir. by Ros Fleming, and pianists John Beswick and Michael Finnissy. Selections: A Life Apart; Anointing the Wounds; The Lord's Prayer, Healing, Give thou to me, O God. Rec. engineer Mike Skeet used his own dummy head design to record in three different English churches for acoustics befitting the particular selections. The British Music Label.


IN SILO - "Old Music, New Improvisations" C-33 $20
The explosion of interest in the musical world of chant and early polyphony has benefitted from the ability of modern recording techniques to convey the voluminous acoustics of cathedrals and other large spaces so important to this music. Here are four specialist performers of early music and improvisation, playing in a space whose reverberation becomes a primary element in the musical performance. It is an empty agricultural silo 35 meters diameter by 50 meters height. To capture both the direct sound of the instruments and the "wet" acoustics of the space, two Aachen dummy heads were employed! Equally trippy via any matrix surround sound decoder and loudspeakers! Works of Narvaez, Hildegard von Bingen, Vogt, Ortiz, Rossler and Sephardic melodies. Performers: Russ Hodge, viola da gamba/fiddle/dilruba; Knut Rossler, soprano saxophone; Johannes Vogt, lute/guitar; Ute Kreidler, soprano. Imported from Burkhart Braunbehrens label.

NESONG OF SONGS, Come Into My Garden - Tapestry C-34 $17
This is the first binaural CD from the award-winning audiophile label Telarc. Subtitled "A Portrait of Sensual and Spiritual Love," it juxtaposes the sacred and secular aspects of the ancient texts of Hildegard von Bingen and melds some of her music with Latin chants, early Hebrew cantillations and even an Israeli popular song. A love of singing medieval music is the thrust of the multi-cultural female vocal ensemble Tapestry. The ensemble's director, Laurie Monahan, has also commisioned several 20th century composers to create works for the album based on historical texts and music. The richly varied CD also includes Sephardic instrumental pieces played by Shira Kammen and ensemble members. Michael Bishop, Telarc's fulltime recording engineer, used the Neumann KU-100 head plus a Sennheiser MKH-20 and 20-bit digital to create this primarily binaural recording which also decodes beautifully using any matrix surround processor. (Telarc has been recording with a Neumann dummy head for some time, feeding its signal to channels 4 & 5 of the new 5.1 digital surround speaker format.)

 

PAUL PARAY: Mass for Joan of Arc C-35 $16
This is the only binaural recording of this glorious modern but tonal mass by the acclaimed former conductor of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. (Collectors may remember the premiere recording on a long-deleted Mercury Living Presence LP.) This great masterpiece is little-known because Paray's conducting career eclipsed his composing. He created a profoundly religious work, sensitive to the nuances of the sacred text. The Soloists, Choir and Orchestra of Detroit's Assumption Grotto Church are thoroughly professional, directed by Rev. Eduard Perrone, who has throughly researched the work and its performance, which was recorded live during services using the HEAD Acoustics binaural system. This results in a certain amount of extraneous noise in the church but also captures the extraordinary energy of a live performance before an audience. Another interesting sonic aspect of this CD is that the other six selections were recorded with standard stereo miking - offering a comparison with the Mass in true binaural sound. These selections are: Mozart: Regina caeli in C, Subtuum praesidium, Ave verum corpus; Bellini: Salve Regina; Donizetti: Asperges me; Spohr: Jubilate Deo.

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