King's Singers

Romance du Soir

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British ensemble the King's Singers holds the well-deserved reputation as one of the very finest male vocal groups. It has an exceptionally broad repertoire, ranging from Renaissance music to freshly commissioned works, as well as forays into folk song and popular music. The title of this album, Romance du Soir, aptly characterizes the warm serenity of most of the tracks. The group's versatility is evident in the selections here, which include Renaissance motets, Romantic and early 20th century part songs, and one contemporary work by English, French, German, Austrian, Flemish, and American composers. The singers are consistent in the purity and strength of their tone and the sweetness of their blend; they seem to breathe and think as a single organism. The featured work on the album is an attractive and witty four-movement cycle by Libby Larsen, A Lover's Journey, with texts by Shakespeare and Joyce. Larsen's language is essentially tonal, spiced with rich chromatic harmonies and the discreet use of tart dissonance. Many of the other selections, by Saint-Saëns, Brahms, Strauss, Elgar, and Sullivan have a lush, late Romantic sound, and the singers perform them with the requisite breadth and expressiveness. The album should be of interest to listeners looking for a cappella choral music with a tone of autumnal calm and gentleness. Signum's sound is clean and nicely ambient.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
Choruses (2) for chorus with piano ad lib, Op. 68
1 03:15
2 02:14
Partsongs (3) for chorus, Op. 18
3 03:06
4 02:41
Partsongs (3) for chorus, Op. 18
5 02:52
6 05:27
7 05:12
8 03:26
9 05:28
10 02:56
11 02:56
12 05:42
Choruses (3) for male chorus, o.Op. 123 (TrV 270, AV 123)
13 05:47
A Lover's Journey, for vocal ensemble
14 02:52
15 04:26
16 01:01
17 02:56
18 02:52
19 04:21
blue highlight denotes track pick