Harmonia Mundi HMU607650
Music by Byrd, de Ceballos, Clemens, Gibbons, Gombert, McCabe, Sheppard, Tallis, Tomkins, Victoria
This ‘greatest hits’ album celebrating stilo antico’s tenth season draws from nine of their highly successful CDs. Each track is accompanied by a brief comment from one of the singers, not a scholarly commentary but a practical response from the perspective of the performer. Particular highlights are the opening 12-part O Praise the Lord by Thomas Tomkins, the Gloria from Tallis’s Mass Puer natus est and John McCabe’s Woefully arrayed, the only modern track on the CD. The singing is beautifully tidy and expressive, and the CD is a useful way to decide which of their CDs you would like to explore further. Personally I was intrigued by Rodrigo de Ceballos’s Hortus conclusus on their Song of Songs album.
D. James Ross