on 18 March 2012
I've enjoyed much of James MacMillan's work since I first heard Isabel Gowdie. I don't share his religious convictions at all but I recognise he is powerfully motivated to write music of meaning and beauty. This collection is a fine set of works. I lent it to a friend who needed some solace and he found it deeply moving and asked me to get him a copy. The recording quality is excellent, with good balance and soundstage. It would be a nice intro to MacMillan's work.
on 21 January 2013
This CD was advertised in the December copy of "Gramaphone", and, since Macmillan is a composer I've long thought I should become acquainted with, I boughti it.
I'm really pleased with it : the singing is superb, and the music is outstanding! You think you're listening to a "classical" miserere, then the music takes an unexpected direction . There's a slight shock to the system, and then pleasure . I was expecting jangly, discordant , "difficult" music, and instead found beautiful harmony.I'm going to buy more of this composer's work!
on 24 April 2012
The ghost of Allegri is never far off in this Miserere
and other, more contemporary choral writers from the Baltic and North America
are brought to mind too, on the other tracks, but who cares?
Here is the joy of a creative composer working with a Rolls Royce of a choir
that is simply marvellous to hear and questions of originality are irrelevant.
Let's hope the classical radio stations don't play this disc to death!
on 11 February 2014
The expression of Macmillan's motet settings is, in my opinion, unparalleled in contemporary composition, and this recording by The Sixteen couldn't convey it better. The title piece, Miserere, is sensitively performed without losing a dramatic edge, and the Strathclyde Motets are full of character. A fantastic purchase, highly recommended!