Barber, Samuel - Songs - Finley, Gerald (baritone)

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'This is a pretty stunning achievement. At his most mellifluous and focused, Gerald Finley has beauty of tone to spare. But he is also at his most expressive - hollowing out the voice for the hopelessness of the song "Bessie Bobtail", letting it splinter with anger at the climax of the brief, furious "Sea Snatch". Throughout, Julius Drake proves a predictably accomplished, thoughtful partner. The pair move easily and logically from the prettiness of the very early songs through the complexities of the Hermit Songs and the pensive Mélodies passagères. The overwhelming feeling here is of idealism tainted, though never quite shattered, by war, by poverty, by human nature. Finley only gains in power, attaining at points the kind of bitter life-force so well remembered from his performance in Turnage's anti-war opera The Silver Tassie. It's also a canny move to place Dover Beach as the final track. It may be an early work, but the introduction of the string quartet (the excellent Aronowitz Ensemble) to close the disc shifts the mood, sending us off in another direction. It comes as a hopeful reminder of the wonder of love, even with a sting in its tail. Entirely appropriate for a bittersweet, marvellous collection.'

The wonderful Gerald Finley, described recently as 'the best living baritone currently at the peak of his powers' (The Globe and Mail), brings his 'glorious sound and great dramatic instinct' to this fascinating selection of songs, sensitively accompanied by Julius Drake.

Barber's songs are among his greatest musical achievements, demonstrating above all his sustained lyric impulse and graceful melodic writing. Another aspect was his well-developed literary taste. He unfailingly selected texts of high quality, including English 'Georgian' poets, Irish bards, the French Symbolists and poets writing in English who were affected by them, such as James Joyce, as well as some of his own American contemporaries. Throughout his song output, he found ways of embodying the poets' thought in musical correlatives that were never merely decorative, and developed an instinctive knack for embodying words in a memorable vocal shape. Presented here are a range of early and later songs including Barber's first success for voice, Dover Beach, which the composer sang on its first recording in 1935.
Artikelnummer CDA67528
Streckkod 0034571175287
Utgivningsdatum 2007-10-22
Kategori Vokalt / Klassiskt
Skivbolag Hyperion
Enhet CD
Antal enheter 1
Artister Finley, Gerald (baritone)
Kompositörer Barber, Samuel
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