This CD features the music of four Canadian composers, primarily scored for chorus, with some additional harp, percussion, and strings. It is on the lighter side of music, though distinctly of the twentieth century. The music is frequently lovely. Alexina Louie's Love Songs for a Small Planet is faintly reminiscent of Crumb, while R. Murray Schafer's Magic Songs are a bizarrely interesting composite of ancient and contemporary techniques for an a cappella choir. The singers are the Vancouver Chamber Choir, directed by Jon Washburn, and those who are serious about choral music know that this West Coast city is host to a rich choral scene with high standards of performance. Many musicians contribute effectively, including the string section of the CBC Vancouver Orchestra. Their contribution to Imant Raminsh's Psalm 121 is quietly stunning, suggesting Vaughan Williams. Srul Irving Glick's Canticle of Peace has a comparable effect. None of this music is avant-garde, but it is frequently charming, performed well, and features gorgeous sound. Recorded in 1993, it is an attractive package for those interested in the lighter side of late twentieth-century music.
AllMusic Review by John Keillor
|Love songs for a small planet|
|Canticle of peace|