Gothic Voices – Mary Star Of The Sea (2016)

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Gothic Voices - Mary Star Of The Sea (2016)

Gothic Voices – Mary Star Of The Sea (2016)
EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 317 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 177 Mb | Artwork included
Classical, Vocal | Label: Linn | # CKD 541 | Time: 01:15:32

Gothic Voices, the world-famous early music ensemble, makes its Linn debut with a recording celebrating the biblical matriarch Mary. Pieces from contemporary composers Joanne Metcalf and Andrew Smith sit alongside settings of Marian texts from the 13th and 14th centuries. Notably, there is a rare setting of English biblical text which precedes the first publication of an English language bible by 150 years.

Mary in her various guises – caring mother, virgin lover, guiding light – are explored through settings of ancient ritualistic texts showing her mythical and human aspects, whilst contemporary settings relate the themes to the modern day. The contemporary works are cleverly constructed around a modal core so that they fit perfectly with the structure and sound of the early music compositions.

With over thirty years experience Gothic Voices’ complete understanding of every aspect of early music performance is exceptional.

For many music lovers, one of the finest recordings of the last 50 years was the extraordinary A Feather on the Breath of God, the legendary recording from the Gothic Voices recorded in 1981, which, for many, served as an introduction to the world of medieval polyphony as represented by Hildegard of Bingen. This new CD is just for the four outstanding singers of Gothic Voices, unaccompanied and unadorned (and not the original singers from 35 years ago!). This is the first of a series for Linn: the next will be devoted to Dufay.

This new CD is largely from later in the medieval period, principally the 13th and 14th centuries, interspersed with recent material from Joanne Metcalf and Andrew Smith. The focus in this CD is not a single composer but a single theme of Marian devotion.

Not to pay attention to the context, and to listen to the CD as pure music is to miss a little of the purpose of the programme, something which has been obviously carefully planned. To say that is to take nothing away from the beauty and security of the a capella singing, which is sheer delight throughout.

It would be simple to dismiss Marian devotions as of a kind, when Mary is of such significance in so many ways, not simply as ‘The Star of the Sea’, or the young virgin at the Annunciation but no less as the mature mother in grief at the foot of the Cross (‘Stond wel, Moder, under rode’) and the assumed Queen of Heaven. The programme thus moves through stages from the general through to the particular Mary on whom the believer might focus a specific meditation and prayer.

It is the agonised grief of ‘Stond wel…’ in the anonymous form, which is the highlight of the CD – there is astonishing depth of beauty and anguish in the simple lines of the dialogue between mother and crucified Son. The simplicity is part of the intensity communicated. It is not often than reviewers draw attention to the acoustic of the recording, but the effect of the ambience of Boxgrove Priory gives a wonderful sense of background silence and timelessness. Regardless of personal faith, the sense of loss is universal, and it is caught to perfection here.

There are glories throughout, and the examples of modern pieces are well-performed. I confess that I remain in two minds about these. They contain fine moments and serve to remind us that Marian devotion is not something confined to a distant past but a continuing and important part of faith for so many. And yet, for myself, I think I would have preferred to have heard more pieces from the wealth of existent material from the Middle Ages. But that does not detract from the significance or excellence of the programme – in other moods, I might think differently.

Just lovely!

Review by Michael Wilkinson, MusicWeb International

This welcome revitalisation of an iconic group is characterised by warmth of tone and beautiful blend. Their selection of Marian medieval monody and polyphony, arranged with the greatest care and taste into two parts expressing her heavenly and human attributes, includes Latin and old English texts, offering differently intimate sound worlds. Alongside glorious, delicately nuanced new works by the brilliant American Joanne Metcalf, including the magical Music for the Star of the Sea, and the affectionately sonorous Stond wel, Moder, under rode from Andrew Smith, here is a thoroughly engaging recording of impeccable clarity.

Review by Rebecca Tavener, Choir & Organ

Gothic Voices - Mary Star Of The Sea (2016)

Gothic Voices at Allmusic
Gothic Voices Website
Gothic Voices at Wiki

Gothic Voices:
– Catherine King, mezzo-soprano
– Steven Harrold, tenor
– Julian Podger, tenor
– Stephen Charlesworth, baritone

Tracklist:

01. Joanne Metcalf (b.1958): Il nome del bel fior – Part I: Maria I (2:50)
02. Anonymous (13th c.): Stillat in stellam radium (2:48)
03. Joanne Metcalf: Music for the Star of the Sea (8:04)
04. Anonymous (14th c.): Stella maris illustrans omnia (2:20)
05. Joanne Metcalf: Il nome del bel fior – Part V: Maria III (2:29)
06. Anonymous (14th c.): Laetetur caeli curia (3:19)
07. Anonymous (12th c.): Tronus regis (1:19)
08. John Dunstaple (c.1390–1453): Beata mater (2:18)
09. Richard Smert (fl.1428–1477): Ave, decus saeculi (4:47)
10. John Dunstaple: Ave maris stella (4:01)
11. Joanne Metcalf: Il nome del bel fior – Part IV: Il nome del bel fior (4:17)
12. Anonymous (13th c.): Dou way, Robin / Sancta mater gratiae (2:43)
13. Godric of Finchale (c.1065–1170): Crist and Sainte Marie (2:01)
14. Anonymous (15th c.): Sancta Maria virgo (1:26)
15. Anonymous (13th c.): Stond wel, Moder, under rode (7:54)
16. Leonel Power (c.1370–1445): Beata progenies (1:03)
17. Andrew Smith (b.1970): Stond wel, Moder, under rode – Part I (3:55)
18. Anonymous (15th c.): Iesu, fili virginis (2:56)
19. Anonymous (15th c.): Pia mater salvatoris (3:37)
20. Andrew Smith: Stond wel, Moder, under rode – Part II (4:40)
21. Gregorian Chant: Gaude, Maria virgo (3:34)
22. Anonymous (13th c.): Alleluia psallat / Alleluia concinat – Virga Jesse (3:11)

EAC log
Exact Audio Copy V1.1 from 23. June 2015

EAC extraction logfile from 11. November 2016, 22:50

Gothic Voices / Mary Star of the Sea

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Null samples used in CRC calculations : Yes
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Used output format : User Defined Encoder
Selected bitrate : 128 kBit/s
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Add ID3 tag : No
Command line compressor : C:Program Files (x86)Exact Audio CopyFlacflac.exe
Additional command line options : -V -8 -T "Date=%year%" -T "Genre=%genre%" %source%

TOC of the extracted CD

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1 | 0:00.00 | 2:50.24 | 0 | 12773
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22 | 72:21.61 | 3:10.41 | 325636 | 339926

Range status and errors

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Filename C:tempMary Star of the Sea – Gothic VoicesMary Star of the Sea.wav

Peak level 94.2 %
Extraction speed 2.2 X
Range quality 100.0 %
Test CRC C0655251
Copy CRC C0655251
Copy OK

No errors occurred

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None of the tracks are present in the AccurateRip database

End of status report

==== Log checksum 1743D5264A9357B1A4E927C13DDCCE2EAA5FE3E39564EEA1FBCB6845EF00DED1 ====

DR log
foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2017-08-12 22:48:02

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Gothic Voices / Mary Star of the Sea
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR12 -13.69 dB -30.95 dB 2:50 01-Joanne Metcalf: Il nome del bel fior – Part I: Maria I
DR14 -7.14 dB -25.25 dB 2:48 02-Anonymous (13th c.): Stillat in stellam radium
DR14 -3.58 dB -24.47 dB 8:04 03-Joanne Metcalf: Music for the Star of the Sea
DR12 -6.89 dB -23.66 dB 2:20 04-Anonymous (14th c.): Stella maris illustrans omnia
DR14 -0.51 dB -21.17 dB 2:29 05-Joanne Metcalf: Il nome del bel fior – Part V: Maria III
DR13 -7.25 dB -24.53 dB 3:19 06-Anonymous (14th c.): Laetetur caeli curia
DR13 -11.81 dB -28.87 dB 1:19 07-Anonymous (12th c.): Tronus regis
DR11 -10.61 dB -24.82 dB 2:18 08-John Dunstaple: Beata mater
DR12 -9.90 dB -24.48 dB 4:47 09-Richard Smert: Ave, decus saeculi
DR15 -4.20 dB -26.06 dB 4:01 10-John Dunstaple: Ave maris stella
DR14 -1.40 dB -21.79 dB 4:17 11-Joanne Metcalf: Il nome del bel fior – Part IV: Il nome del bel fior
DR13 -10.03 dB -27.11 dB 2:43 12-Anonymous (13th c.): Dou way, Robin / Sancta mater gratiae
DR12 -9.01 dB -27.44 dB 2:01 13-Godric of Finchale: Crist and Sainte Marie
DR10 -7.89 dB -23.63 dB 1:26 14-Anonymous (15th c.): Sancta Maria virgo
DR17 -3.30 dB -27.29 dB 7:54 15-Anonymous (13th c.): Stond wel, Moder, under rode
DR12 -9.28 dB -25.72 dB 1:03 16-Leonel Power: Beata progenies
DR13 -5.10 dB -23.94 dB 3:55 17-Andrew Smith: Stond wel, Moder, under rode – Part I
DR11 -4.68 dB -20.37 dB 2:56 18-Anonymous (15th c.): Iesu, fili virginis
DR11 -8.33 dB -24.43 dB 3:37 19-Anonymous (15th c.): Pia mater salvatoris
DR14 -2.39 dB -22.56 dB 4:40 20-Andrew Smith: Stond wel, Moder, under rode – Part II
DR14 -9.83 dB -29.49 dB 3:34 21-Gregorian Chant: Gaude, Maria virgo
DR14 -1.91 dB -20.75 dB 3:11 22-Anonymous (13th c.): Alleluia psallat / Alleluia concinat – Virga Jesse
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 22
Official DR value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 578 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

Gothic Voices - Mary Star Of The Sea (2016)

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