The album contains a Blu-ray® surround sound audio disc and a standard stereo CD of the same music.
5 Stars (out of 5)
The seven members of Ensemble Galilei—Isaac Alderson (flute and uilleann pipes), Hanneke Cassel (fiddle), Ryan McKasson (fiddle), Kathryn Montoya (pennywhistles, shawm, and recorders), Jackie Moran (bodhran, banjo), Sue Richards (harp), and 1990 founder Carolyn Surrick (viola da gamba) are an eclectic group that completely transcend any stereotypes in terms of musical when’s, where’s, or how’s. The only important thing in this newly fashioned Christmas season album is the why, and that is answered by Carolyn Surrick when she speaks of the idea of this album coalescing among several of theRead more members when in Jacksonville, Florida followed by a Winter Solstice concert in December of 2012: “the music that we have known and loved for our whole lives took on a different meaning, imbued with grace and soulfulness.”
Any recording with a banjo, viola da gamba, and harp has got to be well-considered and carefully planned, right? But I don’t sense the wonderful congruousness of this combination, among others, as being something that is planned from an orchestration viewpoint. Rather, it’s the performances themselves, so beautifully crafted and miraculously presented, coupled with a spirituality and uplifting sensibility that allows these disparate lions and lambs to lie down with one another and create such uplifting timbres. If love of music can come across in performances—and I surely think it can—this album would be a demonstration disc of that quality.
Along with tried and true favorites there are also some original compositions as well, and they fit just like a glove. This is quite simply a stunning album, and I can’t imagine a better seasonal offering coming along this year. With spectacular Blu-ray audio surround sound (though be warned it is recorded at a high level and you will want to turn it down from your regular settings) and an accompanying CD, the only thing I wish there was more of that is missing is more music! But I can’t complain—this is a spectacular album.
Silent Nightby Franz Xaver Gruber Orchestra/Ensemble:
Period: Classical Written: 1818; Austria Venue: Sono Luminus, Boyce, Virginia Length: 3 Minutes 46 Secs.
Let All Mortal Flesh Keep Silence - Konvulsionslaten - The Celt
Divinum Mysterium - Taladh ar Slanaigheir (Christ Child Lullabye)
Away in the Manger (Flow Gently, Sweet Afton) - Polonessa Spoof
Es ist ein Ros entsprungen (I Know a Rose Tree) (arr. K. Montoya for chamber ensemble)
I Wonder as I Wander
Fantasia on Greensleeves (arr. for chamber ensemble)
Quelle est cette odeur agreable (Whence is that Goodly Fragrence) - Jesu Kreuz, Leiden und Pein
The Surround - Snowy Path - Half C
Une Vierge Pucelle - Joseph est bien Marie
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen - Good King Wenceslas
At Midnight Hour - Joy Be With You
Carol of the Birds
Winter's Falling Light
The Wexford Carol - Shetland Reel
Brightest and Best of the Sons of the Morning - Farewell to Goirtin
Silent Night (Stille Nacht) (arr. for chamber ensemble)
Average Customer Review: ( 1 Customer Review )
Ethereal QualitiesJanuary 15, 2014By Kathleen S. (Poulsbo, WA)See All My Reviews"First listening to the last, this unique sound lends a holiday spirit, yet timeless melodies for any moment one would like to take a breath and feel alive with inspiration. I'm still behind in the technology lingo... Blu-Ray sounds like quality sound, but I paid additional fee for this and do not have the technology to play it. Highly recommend this title, but wish it had been only the CD version."Report Abuse