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La Mamselle is a rather jaunty song that does not quite have the French feel that its title might suggest. Davis's titles are tantalising, they hint at an inner programme but he never gives anything away. As with Tales of a Summer Past, the pieces on this disc seem to be telling us a story. In my Heart is more obvious, it is a lovely, lyrical Irish-sounding ballad and features the violin playing of Dan Carney [listen -- track 4, 0:00-0:57].

Yearning comes from the album 'Eclipse' and certainly lives up to its title. Featuring long string lines over a walking bass, there is an aura of Air on a G string, but Davis adds some tantalising hints of Habanera rhythm in the bass [listen -- track 5, 0:25-1:27].

Return of the Brave is another piece where the references are superficially obvious. It starts out with the fife and drums and then goes on to add the skirl of the pipes, but Davis leaves us to construct our detailed scenario. Lullaby for Madeleine was presumably written for his daughter Madeleine. It is a lovely piano solo that features much Mozartian figuration.

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Copyright © 13 May 2006 Robert Hugill, London UK


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