The King's Singers, the male vocal sextet, perform with extraordinary vocal blend, purity of tone, technical security, and interpretive sensitivity. This CD brings together choral music from the late nineteenth to the late twentieth century that is related to the broad themes of landscape and time. The collection contains texts related to specific geography, as well as psalms, prayers, and folk songs, set by well-known and less familiar composers, all of whom are masters of choral writing. Richard Rodney Bennett's The Seasons of His Mercies, a setting of John Donne, is particularly dramatic and evocative of the poet's ardent piety. Jackson Hill's Remembered Love, which sets the work of seventh century Japanese poet Hitomaro, avoids overt orientalism, but the structural and textural individuality of his writing reflects the exotic imagery of the text. Esti Dal is a harmonically rich and haunting setting of a Hungarian folk song made by Zoltán Kodály. The CD concludes with a stunningly poignant and simple setting of Even Such Is Time, the prayer Sir Walter Raleigh wrote on the eve of his execution, by Bob Chilcott, a former member of the ensemble. The group is joined by treble Andrew Swait, who seamlessly blends with the ensemble.
AllMusic Review by Stephen Eddins
|Psalms of David (Taaveti laulud), for chorus|