Christmas music from
Caius College Choir -
'... high-quality singing with lovely rounded tone ...'
Geoffrey Webber and the Choir of Caius College Cambridge's 2014 Christmas offering on CD manages a thoughtful and widely spread mix of periods and styles, interesting settings and high-quality singing with lovely rounded tone, packaged with full texts, translations, and informative liner notes by Andrew Stewart which take us far beyond a cursory description of the music, beginning by stating that 'Christmas' appears not to have occurred either at Christmastime or in Bethlehem.
Performing not in their own smallish college chapel in the fens but in the Church of St John the Evangelist, Upper Norwood (a well-used London recording venue), the choir begins with Jan Sandström's striking arrangement of Michael Praetorius' Es ist ein Ros entsprungen. The famous carol and it's usual harmonies are slowed down considerably and combined with long suspended notes from a separate group of singers, adding a sheen of glowing, shimmering sound. Had the process been visual, it could have been described as smearing paint, but aurally it's a wonderful and most unusual effect...
Copyright © 25 December 2014