We already shared our editors' favorite classical instrumental recordings of the year, and now it's time to delve into the world of classical music with vocal accompaniment, including a celebratory take on the works of Guillaume Dufay, an exploration of Handel's lesser-known arias, and a study of the minimalist compositions of Andrew Hamilton.
This release presents Magnificats by Johann Sebastian Bach and two of his sons, Johann Christian Bach and Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach.
An impressive deep dive into Brahms' songs, featuring a rising baritone who studied with Dietrich Fischer-Dieskau.
New scholarship has allowed the reconstruction of these fascinating 11th-century settings of texts by Boethius.
Andrew Kirkman and the Binchois Consort present music for Marian devotions, corresponding to carved alabaster figures from the 15th century.
A contemporary of Josquin, Antoine de Févin receives a long-delayed appraisal by the Brabant Ensemble on this Hyperion release.
The novelty of this album of English anthems is due to the presence of the new Canterbury Cathedral Girls' Choir.
Daniel Reuss leads Cappella Amsterdam in a moving collection of funeral motets and lamentations by the Franco-Flemish master Josquin des Prez.
The influential vocal and choral music of Franco-Flemish composer Jacques Arcadelt is presented on three discs in this 2018 box set from Ricercar.
Superb interpretations of Schubert, technically flawless, intimate, and deeply felt.
Exultant performances of music of 16th-century composer William Mundy by a Scottish choir.
A collection of sacred music that beautifully conveys the meditative quality of the texts involved.
Satisfying, text-sensitive performances of little-known Handel bass arias.
Graham Ross leads the Choir of Clare College, Cambridge in a program of Russian and English works on the subject of the Trinity.
World premiere recordings of unique Russian choral music in memory of the World War I dead.
This 2017 performance of Monteverdi's 1610 Vespers by Collegium Vocale Gent marked the 450th anniversary of the composer's birth.
Kaspars Putnins and the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir are intense and sensuous in works by Schnittke and Pärt.
A generous range of Debussy songs, oriented toward his relationship with poetry, and beautifully performed.
On Prologue, soprano Francesca Aspromonte presents opening scenes from early Baroque operas that provide an emotional connection to the drama.
A lovely a cappella recording that effectively ties together early Renaissance and modern compositions on Marian themes.
Gothic Voices presents Guillaume Dufay's music as it might have been performed at a Burgundian wedding celebration.
György Vashegyi / Chantal Santon Jeffery / Reinoud Van Mechelen / Orfeo Orchestra / Purcell Choir / Florian Sempey
Rameau's pastorale-héroique Naïs is vividly re-created on period intruments by György Vasheygi and the Orfeo Orchestra on this 2018 Glossa release.
Hervé Niquet and Le Concert Spirituel revive the music of Baroque composer Orazio Benevolo with this disc of polychoral sacred works.
Solid performances of virtually unknown repertory, following a procedure laid down by the composer himself.
Conducted by the composer, this is a definitive version of Adams' opera about A-bomb developer Robert Oppenheimer.
More than a quickie crossover album by the star Peruvian tenor: a rethinking of his voice for popular song.
The Düben Collection consists of manuscripts and published works of the 17th century, which are given lively performances by Abendmusiken Basel.
French musicians bring the 17th-century English song to life.
Ludovic Morlot delivers an impressive performance of Hector Berlioz's Grande Messe des Morts with the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and Chorale.
Masaaki Suzuki and the Bach Collegium Japan deliver a revelatory performance of Beethoven's late masterpiece, the Missa Solemnis, Op. 123.
A colorful biographical opera about Apple founder Steve Jobs, superbly performed and recorded.
Robert Quinney and the Choir of New College, Oxford, present Parry's introspective Songs of Farewell with Mendelssohn's influential Sechs Sprüche.
Stravinsky's L'Histoire du soldat receives a straightforward reading in French in this 2018 release from Harmonia Mundi.
The fifth volume in the Orlando Consort's series of Machaut's vocal music presents songs on the topic of fortune.
The Orlando Consort continues its survey of the vocal music of Guillaume de Machaut with this sixth volume on Hyperion.
All the music comes from the first part of Vaughan Williams' career and hangs together beautifully.
Roderick Williams' English-language performance of Schubert's Winterreise swaps out familiar associations for a challenging listening experience.
Public and reflective sides of Vaughan Williams' sacred music, neatly summarized.
The Gesualdo Six present a program of English motets from the 16th and 17th centuries, with works by Tallis, Byrd, Gibbons, and others.
Sharp, exciting performances of neglected music from late in Claudio Monteverdi's career.
Gripping works in a minimalist style of a whole new kind.
A fine exploration of the unique idiom of this German-born Midwestern American composer, especially effective in song.
This release by a pair of French ensembles sets a new standard for Buxtehude's chamber, vocal, and instrumental music.
A Palestrina mass that calls into question the composer's reputation as a conservative, beautifully performed.