FRESH AND STYLISH
'Richard Edgar-Wilson gives musicianly interpretations of all works, admirably partnered by the Coull Quartet ...'
Songs for tenor -
with TREVOR HOLD
This enterprising disc contains two masterworks from the repertoire,
one well-known (Vaughan Williams's On Wenlock Edge), the other
(Rubbra's Amoretti) less familiar. Rubbra took his texts from
the sequence of 89 love sonnets that the Elizabethan poet, Edmund Spenser,
wrote to his second wife, Elizabeth Boyle. He set ten of these in 1935 in
two sets of five; those on the disc are the second set. They remind us what
a fine songwriter Rubbra was in his younger days, writing music both colourful
and varied in texture. The gravity of the string quartet medium suits his
musical thought perfectly [listen -- track 7, 'Fresh
Spring', 0:00-0:51]. The Vaughan Williams songcycle, in which Edgar-Wilson
and the Coull Quartet are joined by pianist James Lisney, is given a fresh
and stylish performance, despite illustrious competition from previous recordings.
Edgar-Wilson's performance may lack the depth of Ian Partridge's
classic interpretation, but this light lyrical tenor has excellent phrasing
and tone. Listen to the way he captures the hysterical climax to 'Is
my team ploughing' [listen -- track 15, 'Is
my team ploughing', 2:17-3:18].
Copyright © 7 January 2001
Trevor Hold, Peterborough, UK
CD INFORMATION - SOMM RECORDINGS SOMMCD 222
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