Related Reviews
THEABSOLUTESOUND.COM
'young and fresh-sounding.'
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Gloucestershire Echo
'Astounding with a powerful performance...'
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The Observer
'...the whole coming to a glorious conclusion in the final Neue Liebeslieder quartet, as fragrant and luxuriant as a rose in full bloom.'
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The Times
Contemporary composers credit a new generation of fearless singers with firing a boom in song cycles.
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Pizzicato
5 Stars
5 stars from Pizzicato!
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American Record Guide
'Everything, though, is competently done; and it is a pleasure to hear that Hough, already one of our best pianists, is a composer to be reckoned with'.
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Classic FM Magazine
5 Stars
'...top-drawer performances... outstanding release...'
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Gramophone
'...these fresh and direct performances have much to commend them.'
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Klassik.com
'The sound is focused, clear, vivid and the balanced vocal and instrumental parts are very successful.' (translated from German)
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International Record Review
'They are throughout crisp, fresh, speedy, intelligent, well recorded, with good German...'
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MusicWeb International
'...an attractive, fun and well executed album...'
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Audiophile Audition
4 Stars
'The Prince performs perfectly in these works...'
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Radio New Zealand
'This is a highly accomplished group...'
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Nottingham Post
4 Stars
"...vividly presented by Alisdair Hogarth and the five voices of his Consort."
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theartsdesk.com
'...experience goosebumps of delight...'
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allmusic.com
'...a choice worth considering...'
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Audio Video Club of Atlanta
'...sharply defined point making and the scintillating edge the members of the Prince Consort impart to their vision of Brahms.'
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The Guardian
'...such fresh-toned performances by the five singers of the Prince Consort...'
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The Observer
"...original and beguiling, the performances first rate."
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Somewhere Boy
'For all of these multifarious influences, Other Love Songs feels remarkably unified...'
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musicOMH
5 Stars
"Other Love Songs is a thrilling addition to its genre...I heartily recommend it."
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Words and Music
'...light, frothy performances; they make the sung waltz sound the latest craze.'
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SA-CD.net
5 Stars
"A marvellous disc...This release can't be too highly recommended on any account."
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The Scotsman
4 Stars
'...the personable voices of The Prince Consort...'
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The Lebrecht Report
4 Stars
'...rather wonderful...'
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musicOMH
'As close to an ideal performance of the two Brahms sets as I can imagine.'
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Classical Music Magazine
"The Prince Consort is anything but average - innovative programming and first-class performances mark it out as one of the most distinctive presences on today's concert scene."
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The Prince Consort - Other Love Songs - BBC Music Magazine


09 September 2011
BBC Music Magazine
Hilary Finch
4 Stars

You'd never know it, but this new release, with its teasing title Other Love Songs, is dominated by Brahm's Liebeslieder Walzer and Neue Libeslieder - and in finely judged, delightfully youthful performances from the vocal ensemble The Prince Consort.  But its eponymous Other Love Songs are those composed by the British pianist Stephen Hough; and they form a new song cycle of outstanding achievement.

Written at the suggestion of Prince Consort's artistic director and pianist Alisdair Hogarth as a companion piece for the Brahms, the songs complement the Liebeslieder with settings of poems celebrating gay love, religious love, even love of a city for its passing strangers.  Hough finds language, a style, a startling response for the unique and elusive scent of each poem.  There are solos and various pairings of voices, interwoven with often surprising and always thrilling piano writing.

Baritone and tenor hum and duet their way through When I have passed, by the gay black poet of the 1920s Harlem renaissance, Claude McKay.  Soprano and mezzo-soprano rise to the fiery ecstasy of the mystic and hermit, Mother Julian of Norwich; and that Victorian parlour favourite, Pale hands I loved, is revealed as an anguished lesbian lovesong, complete with Indian Bhairav scales and sitar-like plucked piano strings.


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