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Christmas Carols [Box set]

The Taverner Consort & Andrew Parrott Audio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
Price: £11.46 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Frequently Bought Together

Christmas Carols + While Shepherds Watched (Psalmody, The Parley of Instruments, Peter Holman) (Hyperion)
Price For Both: £17.82

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Product details

  • Audio CD (5 Nov 2007)
  • Number of Discs: 4
  • Format: Box set
  • Label: EMI
  • ASIN: B000W03RO4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 171,979 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Disc: 1
1. Methinks I see an heav'nly host
2. While shepherds watched their flocks
3. Serafín, que con dulce harmonía
4. Los que fueren de buen gusto
5. Magnificat super 'Angelus ad pastores'
See all 15 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. In dulci jubilo (a 16) Pars I
2. Noël X
3. Dormi Jesu
4. Adeste, fideles S186 No. 4
5. Hodie nobis caelorum Rex
See all 16 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Veni, veni Emmanuel (female voices)
2. Stille Nacht (original version)
3. Il est né, le divin Enfant (vocal)
4. Nova! nova!
5. Marche des rois
See all 24 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. While shepherds watched their flocks by night
2. We three Kings of Orient are
3. I wonder as I wander
4. Qui creavit celum (Song of the Nuns of Chester)
5. Ther is no rose of swych vertu
See all 17 tracks on this disc

Product Description

CD Description

Christmas is a time for music. Virtually every choir and orchestra has a Christmas concert, carols echo through shopping centres, sometimes with live performers, and even churches that during the rest of the year show only a minimal interest in music expand beyond their normal psalms and hymns. Each country has its own traditions, some more vigorous than others. Some traditions declined and have been revived in the last century or two.

A 4 CD box set, which encompasses over 66 individual pieces all performed by the Taverner Consort and Andrew Parrott, The majority are Christmas carols yet this anthology also includes music that is more sophisticated. The majority of the pieces are performed on period instruments and sung using vocal techniques of the time so as to recreate how they may have been performed years ago.

Product Description

I will ship by EMS or SAL items in stock in Japan. It is approximately 7-14days on delivery date. You wholeheartedly support customers as satisfactory. Thank you for you seeing it.

Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Christmas Music! 1 Jan 2008
Format:Audio CD
I purchased this very modestly priced box of 4 CDs of Christmas Music and they have turned out to be superb. There are 66 tracks to listen to ranging from Sarum Chant to music composed by living masters. There are carols by the 18c American William Billings; an addictive setting (not an arrangment!) of Nahum Tates "While Shepherds Watched" by John Foster a Georgian composer of whom I know nothing, I am afraid; a Christmas Cantata by MA Charpentier; a Thomas Hardy style "God Rest You Merry Gentlemen" with serpent, clarionets, &c., to an unfamiliar tune; and all the other tracks are just as much a delight. All performances are excellent; the recordings very good. The approach is to go back to the roots of the music (e.g. "Silent Night" in German with guitar accompaniement) and avoid sentimentality. Enjoy this vital Christmas treat!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars dinodog 3 Feb 2012
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Choice of carols excellent, many hitherto unknown or very seldom heard. Good selection of foreign carols, all beautifully played and sung.

Only a great pity there are no texts in the booklet, especially of those in a foreign language. These would certainly make for rather many pages, but the words for the carols established in our tradition, or easily available elsewhere, could of course be omitted (I counted at least 20 of these)

Otherwise a very generous and enjoyable collection.

The account at the end of the booklet is interesting and informative.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Pity about the seller! 27 Dec 2013
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Now here's a strange thing! I wrote a review about this product several days ago which has disappeared into the ether! The CDs are excellent. A wonderful mixture of instrumental, a capella singing, accompanied singing, some familiar and other unfamiliar music. A real bargain for the price.
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1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too eclectic 11 Dec 2008
By Aquinas
Format:Audio CD
Whilst this set of CDs is good value, it does not really hang together. There is simply too vast a range of musical styles being covered from Liszt's piano arrangment to a dreadful german folksy rendition of Silent night and some baroque thrown in. Its like an Irish stew - everything has been thrown in!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent music, excellent value 11 Nov 2012
By Mark E. Stenroos - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
CD 1: Festive Music From Europe & America (aka The Christmas Album)
CD 2: Nine Centuries of Seasonal Music
CD 3: The Carol Album I
CD 4: The Carol Album II
Taverner Consort Choir & Players/Andrew Parrott, Director

This album's rather generic title doesn't give the consumer a clear idea of the music contained herein.

The 4 CDs gathered in this box were originally released as EMI single discs between 1987-1995. They were bestsellers in the classical music world, especially "The Carol Albums I & II," which feature a nice overview of Christmas music through the ages. CD 1 in this set was originally issued on EMI as "The Christmas Album," which (I guess) would have been confusing sitting as part of a 4-CD set, thus the renaming of this CD per above. Andrew Parrott and his Taverner Consort established themselves as a reliable brand in the performance of early and Baroque music, and these recordings hold up very well a quarter of a century since their initial release. Each CD stands on its own as a well-thought-out program, even if their programs in specific bear obvious similarities to each other, mostly due to the musical periods from which the repertoire has been drawn.

The musical selections contained pretty much cover the bases of choral/vocal classical Christmas favorites, with most of the selections drawn from the Medieval to Baroque eras. Along with the many anonymously composed carols, you get music by Praetorious, Charpentier, Billings, Daquin, Tallis, Liszt, Gabrieli, Hildegard von Bingen, JS Bach, and even Schoenberg (!). A few of the carols/songs appear twice - "Hark! The Herald Angels Sing" and "While Shepherds Watched Their Flocks By Night" - which is to be expected when one is compiling into a collection albums which were issued as stand-alone product on their initial release.

One of the features of these recordings is that Parrott has his singers perform in vocal styles that he imagines were used by the people who first sang this music in their respective eras. That might mean that an American hymn from the Revolutionary War period is sung with a rowdy and twangy vocal color, while a carol like "Silent Night" is sung in German as a simple duet with choir and guitar, reflecting its origins as a piece composed to deal with the fact (legend?) that the church organ had broken down and that the choir director had to come up with a quick fix to save Xmas Eve services. This approach works pretty well in general, as does Parrott's practice of mixing a cappella and instrumentally accompanied selections throughout the various programs.

The EMI versions of these CDs contained lots of readable information in their booklets. Those notes have been jettisoned in this 4-CD set (which has been rereleased on EMI's subsidary label, Virgin Veritas), so you'll need to search out the original EMI issues if extensive program notes are important to you (those CDs are still widely available). The enclosed CD booklet contains only a complete track listing and a 3-page essay that was written for this compilation's 2007 release - not the worst trade-off when one considers the budget-price of this 4CD set.

About that price - be advised that Virgin's MSRP has this 4-CD set priced as "4 CDs for the price of 1," which means that you should be paying anywhere from $13.99 - 16.99 TOPS for this set, with some Amazon Marketplace sellers offering the set in "new" condition for as little as $9 (an incredible bargain when the EMI versions of these CDs still retail as full-priced albums). Pay any more than that and you are being gouged.

Recommended.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Christmas magic 17 Dec 2010
By George Zadorozny - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD
With all respect to the other reviewer who disliked this CD because of its variety, I must disagree with him. To my ear, this is Christmas singing at its magical best. De gustibus non est disputandum, as they say . . . But trying to speak objectively about subjective things, I say, this is a snowy-splendid CD!
5.0 out of 5 stars If you are way past the Christmas Top 10, this is for you. 6 Feb 2014
By david o vaagen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
Interesting songs from the vast body of Christmas literature and authentic performances based on the ages and provenance of the particular song. Serious academic groundwork and knowledgeable performances by well-trained artists have combined to create an album that is well worth adding to your collection.
0 of 10 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A soup of styles of music which lack coherence 11 Dec 2008
By Aquinas - Published on Amazon.com
Whilst this set of CDs is good value, it does not really hang together. There is simply too vast a range of musical styles being covered from Liszt's piano arrangment to a dreadful german folksy rendition of Silent night and some baroque thrown in. Its like an Irish stew - everything has been thrown in!
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