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Bay Area Reporter
'Not only does French Connection contain several brilliant song cycles, expertly performed, but it also introduces us to an artistic milieu that dominated Western Europe for over 30 years. Highly recommended.'
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'Everything about this release points to an urgent recommendation.'
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Opera News
'...this new recording is one of the best we have [of Berkeley's Five Poems].'
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Gramophone
'Ainsley is superb in finding and conveying the particular qualities that lend both Berkeley and Poulenc their musical identities...all delivered here beguilingly.'
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4 Stars
'Britten's Holy Sonnets of John Donne go further, lacerating, consoling, intense.'
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John Mark Ainsley - French Connections - BBC Music Magazine


01 April 2016
BBC Music Magazine
Roger Nichols

Lennox Berkeley's Auden settings are by some way the most satisfying items on this disc, from the delicate piano tracery of 'the small birds' singing, to the objects and animals singing 'agreeably of love'. The music is full of life and colour, and with historical distance we can appreciate more readily now the individuality both of Berkeley's harmonies and of his word setting. Jake Heggie's musings on Poulenc are also attractive and even moving. 


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