Notes and Editorial Reviews
As Jane Manning has been to London’s new music, so more recently Irene Drummond to Scotland’s, her bright timbre and agile vocal movement the inspiration for many composers. This collection is of songs Drummond has commissioned, premiered or championed. All composed in the last 30 years, the newest and the oldest are among the highlights. Lewis Forbes, born in 1987, sets MacDiarmid in eloquent tonal style, his phrases following the rhythms of the words and the piano adding unexpected doublings and counterpoints which prepare the way for more surprises in his Burns setting. James MacMillan’s Three Soutar Settings, in contrast, are the best known pieces here and their deeply rooted melodies and spare accompaniments make the usual breathtaking
Elsewhere the range is great, the subject most often love, the mood often withdrawn: Edward McGuire’s spiky, touching cycle The Web, and Paul Mealor’s long melodies surrounded by quietly ecstatic chords, are poles apart. Upping the energy levels, Judith Bingham conflates Joy Finzi and RD Blackmore into a compact sung tone poem, and John McLeod cries out for freedom and justice with poetry from prison by Irina Ratushinskaya. Iain Burnside shares the credit for performances of total focus.
-- Robert Maycock, BBC Music Magazine
Works on This Recording
A Red, Red Rose, for voice & piano by Roderick Williams
Iain Burnside (Piano),
Irene Drummond ()
Venue: Crear, Argyll, Scotland
Length: 2 Minutes 40 Secs.
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