CD Reviews!

Published: 7th August 2015

After a wonderful few months of concerts across the UK and Europe, including our debuts at the St Magnus International Festival in Orkney and for the Tage Alter Musik Regensburg, where we gave a late-night performance of our ‘An Emerald in a Work of Gold’ programme with the Rose Consort of Viols to an appreciative audience of nearly 1,000, we’re now looking ahead to a busy season of Autumn and Winter concerts.

In the meantime, we’re delighted to see two new CD reviews, one of our 2014 ‘Christmas with the Shepherds’ release and another of our upcoming ‘Loquebantur – Music from the Baldwin Partbooks’, which is released in early October.

Of the former, Glyn Pursglove for Musicweb International commented that ‘Here, if it were ever needed, is triumphant proof that the best of ‘Christmas’ music, when it is good and is performed to the highest standards, quite transcends its occasioning season and rewards listening throughout the year. Even listened to during a Welsh midsummer – by turns windy, wet and sunny – the music on this fine disc by the Marian Consort is ravishingly beautiful and full of quiet fervour…The whole, quite apart from making enrichingly beautiful listening, is a miniature course of instruction in the practice of imitation, one of the fundamental tenets of Renaissance thought and teaching in all the arts.‘ To read the full review, click here.

Guy Weatherall gives ‘Loquebantur’ 5 stars in the latest edition of ‘Classical Music’, saying that ‘Much of the repertoire in this engaging and thoughtfully-planned programme will be unfamiliar, a collection curated by John Baldwin. And it is a measure of his discriminating, adventurous tastes as well as the commitment and talent of the performers here recorded so well, that there is not a single unappealing moment. Be equally adventurous and investigate!

‘Christmas with the Shepherds’ is available, along with all of our previous CDs, from the Recordings page of our website.

‘Loquebantur – Music from the Baldwin Partbooks’ will be on general release from early October, and is available in advance of this exclusively to Friends of the Marian Consort: for more information, and to become a Friend, visit the Support Us page of our website.

< Back to News

Reviews

"The Marian Consort’s performances deliver full value in terms of expressive range and sophistication. Pitch-perfect tuning and immaculately clean ensemble … add further to the attractions of this eminently listenable recital."

BBC Music Magazine

"You are left in no doubt of the agony of the crucifixion in the vocal and horn climax of the opening chorus of Stabat Mater ... intense and riveting."

The Times

"There’s earnest beauty in it and the instrumental playing on this recording is spot on – the Berkeley Ensemble under David Wordsworth clinches the balance of chaste, plaintive and urgent."

The Gaurdian

"The Marian Consort has built an enviable reputation for coolly poised and precisely balanced performances and indeed there are times here when the listener can only sit back and admire, seduced by the sheer beauty of sound."

Early Music Today

"Singing one person to a part, the Marian Consort give sublimely refined, spacious and impeccably tuned performances."

The Sunday Times

"The Marian Consort’s background in early music pays dividends in their superb precision of pitch, impeccable rhythmic placing and beautiful diction … the lush harmonies that open [Judica me] are sumptuously delivered and beautifully recorded."

Gramophone

"Little is known about the 16th-century composer, except that his beautifully smooth polyphony was much admired ... As revealed with pellucid clarity by Rory McCleery’s young Marian Consort on this first recording devoted exclusively to Maillard, he was a subtly expressive composer."

The Times

"With two women in the group, they make no pretence at emulating what might have happened in the 16th century; but that lets them sing out with more freedom. So this is no-nonsense musicianship, but for all that thoroughly musical ... The unfussy performance helps the music enormously."

Gramophone

"The motets are more adventurous, declamatory and cleverly nuanced, with a recognisable house style. The Marian Consort produces a very pleasing sound."

Early Music Today

"The most striking feature of this entertainingly varied collection is the consistently fresh, fruit-ripe tonal quality of the Marian Consort's singing … poised and flexible, the text responded to with notable insight and maturity."

BBC Music Magazine