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Magnificat - The Tudors At Prayer - MusicWeb International

01 May 2014
MusicWeb International
Brian Wilson

This new recording follows fairly hard on the heels of Where late the sweet Birds sang, music by Parsons, White and Byrd (CKD417); two of these composers also appear on the new recording, and it's just as desirable. It's becoming monotonous - though I'm certainly not complaining - to hail the quality of the performances of renaissance music from Magnificat and Philip Cave on Linn. It's also unsettling to have to hedge my bets when recommending established groups such as the Tallis Scholars and The Sixteen in order to point out that they have so many rivals now. 

The opening work here, Mundy's Vox patris cælestis, to a text in praise of the Virgin Mary, with words largely adapted from the Song of Songs, has been Tallis Scholars prime territory for over 40 years since they introduced me to a work I had never heard before on their first recording. Subsequently it's been recorded by Westminster Abbey and The Sixteen and the Tallis Scholars themselves re-recorded it. That's powerful competition but Magnificat are equal to the challenge and to that presented by all the music here. Another winner for all concerned. 

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