This CD starts with a selection of nine songs by Ives. While they're performed with the customary skill and musicianship one expects of DeGaetani and Kalish, the real reason for purchasing this disc is the piece by George Crumb, "Apparition", written expressly for DeGaetani and Kalish.
A setting of extracts from Walt Whitman's "When Lilacs Last in the Dooryard Bloom'd", "Apparition" is a cycle of songs and vocalises which, as the piece progresses, come together as a profound meditation on the nature of life and death, birth and growth, and ultimate redemption and peace. While their performances are consistently praiseworthy, this particular one stands as a stunning achievement for DeGaetani and Kalish. Their rapport is absolutely uncanny; they perform as one entity, driven by an informed and passionately musical intellect.
The music is direct and as emotional and involving as any you're likely to hear in the standard repertoire. If nothing else, this recording stands as a monument to one of the greatest artistic collaborations of our time: Crumb, DeGaetani and Kalish.