In the words of International Record Review "Gabriel Jackson's Requiem is a masterpiece and the performance by the Vasari Singers and Jeremy Backhouse is beyond praise."
Gabriel Jackson is one of the leading lights of contemporary choral music and this is a stunning CD of his brand-new Requiem. The disc features multiple world premiere recordings, including the Requiem, and also works by John Tavener, Bob Chilcott and Francis Pott - all hugely important composers in British choral music in their own right.
Engineered and produced by the Gramophone award-winning team of David Hinnit and Adrian Peacock, the recording quality is absolutely first class, and the Vasari Singers, under Jeremy Backhouse, perform beautifully. This is an essential buy for any lover of choral music - and at the Naxos-level pricing, an incredible bargain.
I'm not the greatest fan of modern music, much of which will prove ephemeral, and if I'm honest, I bought this for the very attractive arrangement of the Pachelbel canon heard on radio 3. However, I believe the Jackson requiem will last, and I'm warming to the other pieces on this disk. So, for anyone who, like me, rarely gives time to much contemporary music, this disk is an adventure well worth risking.
I learned of Gabriel Jackson's Requiem when some singing friends were rehearsing it for a concert. Having bought the CD I was very impressed with both the musicianship of the composer - and the technical demands required of singers - and the beautiful, reflective words about death and loss.
I read a few reviews of this CD before deciding to buy it.The singing of the Vasari Singers is absolutely superb, and I am thrilled with all of the tracks on the CD. The Requiem is a wonderful piece and puts Gabriel Jackson up there with the best of choral composers in my view.
The individual pieces on this CD are all worth hearing, and they have the twin qualities of (a) variety, both between the different composers represented and within Gabriel Jackson's requiem, and (b) coherence; it is worth reading the brief, evocative programme notes to reinforce the way the music fits together.
This well judged collection is dominated by Gabriel Jackson's Requiem, a beautiful variation of the requiem form incorporating settings of unusual pieces in amongst more traditional pieces. Quite beautiful in construction and performance and the other pieces on the CD sit well with it.
Unusual music that is very listenable. The Vasari Singers really perform this beautifully. I have recommended this CD to many people and performed the music with my own choir. The response is very positive due to the interesting and alluring composition.