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Contrapunctus, Owen Rees - In the Midst of Life: Music from the Baldwin Partbooks I (2015)

Posted By: Designol
Contrapunctus, Owen Rees - In the Midst of Life: Music from the Baldwin Partbooks I (2015)

Contrapunctus, Owen Rees - In the Midst of Life: Music from the Baldwin Partbooks I (2015)
William Byrd, Robert Parsons, John Taverner, W. Mundy, Thomas Tallis, D. Gerarde, John Sheppard

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 299 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 161 Mb | Scans included
Genre: Classical, Choral | Label: Signum Classics | # SIGCD408 | Time: 01:08:16

Following its nomination for a Gramophone Early Music Award in 2014, Contrapunctus releases an album of motets from the Baldwin Tudor partbooks, on the theme of mortality. Conducted by Owen Rees, the album includes Sheppard’s epic Media vita and other Tudor gems by Byrd, Parsons, Mundy, Taverner, Gerarde and Tallis, with Contrapunctus’s own reconstructions of the missing tenor parts.

Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Ivari Ilja - Dmitri Shostakovich: Suite on Poems by Michelangelo; Franz Liszt: Petrarca Sonnets (2015)

Posted By: Designol
Dmitri Hvorostovsky, Ivari Ilja - Dmitri Shostakovich: Suite on Poems by Michelangelo; Franz Liszt: Petrarca Sonnets (2015)

Dmitri Shostakovich: Suite on Poems by Michelangelo; Franz Liszt: Sonetti del Petrarca (2015)
Dmitri Hvorostovsky (baritone), Ivari Ilja (piano)

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 196 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 135 Mb | Scans included
Genre: Classical, Vocal | Label: Ondine | # ODE 1277-2 | Time: 00:58:53

GRAMOPHONE Magazine Editor's Choice - December 2015. Ondine’s fourth release together with star baritone Dmitri Hvorostovsky features a program of sonnets by Dmitri Shostakovich (1906–1975) and Franz Liszt (1811–1886). Hvorostovsky is accompanied by his longstanding duo partner, the Estonian pianist Ivari Ilja.

Farinelli, Il Castrato: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (1994)

Posted By: Designol
Farinelli, Il Castrato: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (1994)

Farinelli, Il Castrato: Bande Originale Du Film (1994)
Ewa Mallas-Godlewska (soprano) & Derek Lee Ragin (countertenor)
Les Talens Lyriques, conducted by Christophe Rousset

EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 268 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 146 Mb | Scans ~ 81 Mb
Soundtrack, Score, Classical, Vocal | Label: Auvidis Travelling | # K 1005 | 01:00:42

Soundtrack to the film 'Farinelli', the 1994 biopic film about the life and career of Italian opera singer Farinelli, considered one of the greatest castrato singers of all time. It stars Stefano Dionisi as Farinelli and was directed by Belgian director Gérard Corbiau. Although Dionisi provided the speaking voice, Farinelli's singing voice was provided by a soprano, Ewa Malas-Godlewska and a countertenor, Derek Lee Ragin, who were recorded separately then digitally merged to recreate the sound of a castrato. Through the film the general public discovered a whole repertoire of works for a voice that can no longer be heard today. The soundtrack from the film became a bestseller, as we discovered with delight some beautiful pieces by Handel, Pergolesi, Hasse, Porpora and others, in a unique interpretation.

Lisa Gerrard & Patrick Cassidy - Immortal Memory (2004)

Posted By: Designol
Lisa Gerrard & Patrick Cassidy - Immortal Memory (2004)

Lisa Gerrard & Patrick Cassidy - Immortal Memory (2004)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 283 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 131 Mb | Scans included | 00:57:07
Modern Classical, Vocal Music, World Fusion, Ambient | Label: 4AD | # CAD 2403 CD

Immortal Memory is a collaboration between vocalist Lisa Gerrard and Irish composer Patrick Cassidy. Billed as a cycle of life and death and rebirth, Immortal Memory is better described as an orphaned film score. Cassidy's warm arrangements allow the former Dead Can Dance singer to step out of the dark medieval world that she's called home for nearly 20 years – though there is much of that world within these castle walls – and focus on the simplicity of love, faith, and loss with a grace that's bereft of the icy perfection of her previous work. Gerrard, whose voice has aged like the finest oak, displays an almost supernatural mastery of the material. Her effortless contralto wraps itself around the ten Gaelic, Latin, and Aramaic spirituals like an evening prayer, making each stunning entrance the equivalent of audio comfort food.

Magdalena Kozena, Private Musicke, Pierre Pitzl - Lettere Amorose (2010)

Posted By: Designol
Magdalena Kozena, Private Musicke, Pierre Pitzl - Lettere Amorose (2010)

Magdalena Kožená, Private Musicke, Pierre Pitzl - Lettere Amorose (2010)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 272 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 160 Mb | Scans included
Classical, Vocal, Baroque | Label: Deutsche Grammophon | # 477 8764 | 01:01:34

Mezzo-soprano Magdalena Kozená's collection of vocal solos (plus a few instrumental tracks) from the early Baroque, Lettere Amorose, "Love Letters," is a delight. The recital includes some familiar pieces like d'India's Cruda Amarilli, Monteverdi's Sì dolce è il tormento, and Sanz's giddy dance, Canarios, but consists largely of repertoire that's more obscure but no less engaging. Merula's lullaby chaconne Hor ch'è tempo di dormire is a jewel, gorgeously idiosyncratic and deeply emotional. Caccini's erotic Odi, Euterpe, 'I dolce canto could be mistaken for mature Monteverdi at his most mischievous, but it dates from 1601 or 1602, when Monteverdi was at an early stage in his career. A real standout of the album is Strozzi's L'Eraclito amoroso: Udite amanti, which alternates sections of extravagantly expressive recitative with a ravishingly lyrical chaconne. Kozená easily has the technique to make the music glow and the dramatic gifts to bring it movingly to life. Her sharply characterized interpretations of the songs make each of them seem as fully realized and potent as a short operatic scene. Her voice has the burnished warmth of a mezzo, but can gleam when she soars into her upper register, and throughout she maintains an exquisite purity.

La Stagione, Michael Schneider, Soloists - Alessandro Scarlatti: Cinque Profeti (Christmas Cantata) (1993) [Re-Up]

Posted By: Designol
La Stagione, Michael Schneider, Soloists - Alessandro Scarlatti: Cinque Profeti (Christmas Cantata) (1993) [Re-Up]

Alessandro Scarlatti: Cinque Profeti (Christmas Cantata) (1993)
Heike Hallaschka (Soprano), Barbara Schlick (Soprano), Kai Wessel (Alto)
Christoph Prégardien (Tenor), Michael Schopper (Bass)
La Stagione; Michael Schneider, conductor

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 280 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 175 Mb | Scans included | 01:05:43
Classical, Choral, Baroque | Label: Deutsche Harmonia Mundi | # 05472-77291-2

Cinque Profeti is a little known Christmas cantata by Alessandro Scarlatti. It has a power and subtlety redolent of Handel coupled with touches of early Monteverdi. Sung here to great effect by the five soloists with sensitive instrumentalists, they play together to bring the gentle and subtle melodies - surely written to confer a sense of the special nature of the Christmas season - to life. It’s a recording which is sure to please. Opera was not performed in Rome for much of Alessandro Scarlatti's lifetime; that's why his vocal church music mostly comprised oratorios and cantatas, of which he wrote three for the Palazzo Apostolico. Only one survives: to a libretto by Silvio Stampiglia. Cinque Profeti takes the inventive form of a conversation between the five old testament prophets, Daniel, Ezekiel, Isaiah, Jeremiah and Abraham (the cinque profeti) about the birth of Christ – which was about to be celebrated on the occasion of the cantata’s first performance, in 1705 at the Papal Palace in Rome.

John Potter, Christopher O'Gorman, Rogers Covey-Crump - Conductus, Vol.2: Music & Poetry from 13th-century France (2013) Re-Up

Posted By: Designol
John Potter, Christopher O'Gorman, Rogers Covey-Crump - Conductus, Vol.2: Music & Poetry from 13th-century France (2013) Re-Up

Conductus, Vol.2 - Music & Poetry from 13th-century France (2013)
John Potter - Christopher O'Gorman - Rogers Covey-Crump

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 301 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 164 Mb | Scans included
Genre: Classical, Vocal | Label: Hyperion | # CDA67998 | Time: 01:10:43

Hyperion presents a second volume of music from the Conductus repertory - the least-known genre of medieval music - performed by tenors John Potter, Christopher O'Gorman, Rogers Covey-Crump, three singers who combine expert knowledge of the music with voices of unearthly beauty. This album contains poems set to music from thirteenth-century England and France. The subjects range from straightforward exhortations to the Virgin Mary to criticisms of the Papal Curia and a depiction of the student riots in Orleans in 1236.

Katherine Jenkins - This Is Christmas (2012) [Re-Up]

Posted By: Designol
Katherine Jenkins - This Is Christmas (2012) [Re-Up]

Katherine Jenkins - This Is Christmas (2012)
EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 285 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 138 Mb | Scans included | 00:50:20
Classical Crossover, Christmas, Holidays | Label: Taffia/Warner | # 5053105509225

Best known for her unique interpretations of popular songs, operatic arias and hymns, singer Katherine Jenkins will embrace a new genre this fall when the multi-million selling mezzo-soprano releases her first Christmas album, This is Christmas. This will be the ninth studio album from Jenkins and features 10 newly recorded holiday classics. For this upcoming collection, Jenkins unique vocals can be heard singing traditional holiday tunes from around the world as well as a number of contemporary favorites including "Away In A Manger", "Hark The Herald Angels Sing", "Deck The Halls", and "Come What May", featuring Placido Domingo. "These holiday songs bring back such wonderful memories for me of times spent with family and loved ones", says Jenkins. "I have always hoped that one day I d have the opportunity to record a Christmas album and I can t wait to share my interpretations of these songs with everyone".

Max Emanuel Cencic, Il Pomo d'Oro, Maxim Emelyanychev - Arie Napoletane (2015)

Posted By: Designol
Max Emanuel Cencic, Il Pomo d'Oro, Maxim Emelyanychev - Arie Napoletane (2015)

Max Emanuel Cencic, Il Pomo d'Oro, Maxim Emelyanychev - Arie Napoletane (2015)
Alessandro Scarlatti - N.Porpora - Leonardo Leo - D. Auletta - Leonardo Vinci - G.B. Pergolesi

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 396 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 177 Mb | Scans included
Genre: Classical, Vocal | Label: Decca | # 478 8422 DH | Time: 01:15:28

Countertenor Max Emanuel Cencic has emerged as a new star of the specialty partly through fearless programming, and this collection of Arie Napoletane, Neapolitan arias or arias from Naples, is no exception. There really isn't a "Neapolitan school." Rather, Naples was on the musical cutting edge in the second quarter of the 18th century, and the arias here represent both a classic opera seria style, in the pieces by the massively prolific Alessandro Scarlatti, and music by the composers who pointed the way toward the melodically simpler future of Gluck and eventually Mozart, like Leonardo Leo and Leonardo Vinci. These latter are hardly household names, and Cencic, offering several recorded premieres, renders a valuable service simply by finding and choosing the deliberate and sensuous arias heard here. Moreover, the album's stylistic contrasts play to Cencic's strengths.

Willard White - Aaron Copland: Old American Songs 1 & 2; American Spirituals; Folk-songs from Barbados and Jamaica (1991)

Posted By: Designol
Willard White - Aaron Copland: Old American Songs 1 & 2; American Spirituals; Folk-songs from Barbados and Jamaica (1991)

Willard White with Graeme McNaught - Aaron Copland: Old American Songs 1 & 2;
American Spirituals; Folk-songs from Barbados and Jamaica (1991)

EAC | FLAC | Tracks (Cue&Log) ~ 203 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 132 Mb | Scans included
Classical, Vocal Music, Spirituals, Folk | Label: Chandos | # CHAN8960 | 00:53:59

An enjoyable collection for White fans, although one might prefer one's spirituals on a bigger scale. That said, Willard White makes these well-known songs seem much more intimate and reflective, private rather than public. Swing low, pressed into service at last year's rugby world cup, is sung rather faster than usual. That's no bad thing, as the song can be made to sound rather lachrymose. For White there is a sense of eager anticipation, that heaven really is at hand. The Copland songs are enjoyable too and are sung with apparent enjoyment. They were all new to me and I can see myself returning to them for their witty lyrics and sense of fun. The Chandos recording is good and the voice is well caught. The accompaniment is discreet and intelligent, making this a delightful disc all round.

Lionheart - Paris 1200: Perotin & Leonin - Chant & Polyphony from 12th Century France (1998) [Re-Up]

Posted By: Designol
Lionheart - Paris 1200: Perotin & Leonin - Chant & Polyphony from 12th Century France (1998) [Re-Up]

Lionheart - Paris 1200: Perotin & Leonin - Chant & Polyphony from 12th Century France (1998)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 291 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 179 Mb | Scans included
Classical, Sacred, Chants | Label: Nimbus Records | # NI5547 | Time: 01:13:52

Conductus, organum, and discantus may not be words in your everyday vocabulary, but these terms identify musical forms that defined everyday musical activity during one of music history's most fruitful periods. The 12th century in France, especially in Paris–the artistic, educational, and religious center of Western Europe–saw enormous progress in the arts, architecture, and education. Not surprisingly, technical and theoretical aspects of music advanced as well. On this disc, the six-voice men's ensemble Lionheart demonstrates in vivid, rich vocal tones the sometimes stark but always powerful sound of Medieval chant and its expanded two- and three-part forms. The liner notes give clear explanations of the compositions and provide the listener with meaningful historical context. But listening to these excellent voices is not just an educational experience. The music has an inherent purity, sensuality, and honesty that's refreshing and reassuring.

Singer Pur - Adrian Willaert: Musica Nova - The Petrarca Madrigals (2009) 2CDs

Posted By: Designol
Singer Pur - Adrian Willaert: Musica Nova - The Petrarca Madrigals (2009) 2CDs

Singer Pur - Adrian Willaert: Musica Nova - The Petrarca Madrigals (2009) 2CDs
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 537 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 278 Mb | Scans ~ 27 Mb
Label: Oehms Classics | # OC 814 | Time: 02:01:38
Classical, Choral, Renaissance, Vocal Music

Flemish composer Adrian Willaert – who served as maestro di capella at the Cathedral of San Marco in Venice from 1527 until his death in 1562 – contributed so much to the Italian renaissance; while he wasn't the first to develop the Venetian polychoral style, its propagation in the mid-sixteenth century may well be laid at his feet. Willaert helped introduce the forms of canzona and ricercare, which greatly aided the growth of instrumental music in the years to come. The nearly overarching interest in chromaticism among Italian composers in the late renaissance can be traced to Willaert's door. Nevertheless, toss a dart into a crowd of music scholars and chances are you won't manage to hit one that has much of an opinion about Willaert's work or his music – it is seldom recorded and CDs devoted to Willaert alone are rare. On their own, these aspects make Oehms Classics' Adrian Willaert: Musica Nova – featuring the talents of expert vocal ensemble Singer Pur – special, valuable, and significant for purposes of study and filling a major hole in the renaissance repertoire. But beyond that, it is a fine listening experience as well.

Lisa Gerrard - The Best Of Lisa Gerrard (2007)

Posted By: Designol
Lisa Gerrard - The Best Of Lisa Gerrard (2007)

Lisa Gerrard - The Best Of Lisa Gerrard (2007)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 408 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 174 Mb | Covers included | 01:15:36
World Fusion, Vocal Music, Modern Classical, Ambient, Dark Wave | Label: 4AD | # CAD 2701CD

Issued in 2007 on the 4AD label, THE BEST OF LISA GERRARD collects many of the finest tracks by the former Dead Can Dance vocalist/multi-instrumentalist. While the compilation includes a few tracks by that revered act, most notably the mystical "Yulunga (Spirit Dance)," a song that showcases Gerrard's striking voice, it primarily focuses on her solo work and film compositions, which both draw from music across the globe. On these pieces, Gerrard often collaborates with fellow Australian native Pieter Bourke, as on the passionate "Swans" and the expansive "Sacrifice," the latter from the INSIDER score. Although this anthology is a mere fraction of Gerrard's recorded output, it does serve as an excellent introduction to her impressive catalogue.