Clara Sanabras - The New Irish Girl - Early Music Today
In The New Irish Girl, Carter and Sanabras have expanded on the modern tradition of counter-tenors performing folksongs to the lute with this collection of their own English, Irish and Scottish folksong settings. Although the bulk of songs are for voice and lute, some of the tracks also feature other notable members of the British early music scene: Susanne Heinrich (viola da gamba) and Pamela Thorby (recorders) plus innovative jazzers Jacqueline Dankworth (voice) and Harvey Brough (voice, psaltery). In true folk tradition the songs have been compiled from diverse sources including aged library books, radio, recordings and a song learned in a pub. Sanabras' voice has a light feel that suits this material perfectly and is underpinned by Carter's nimble and sympathetic accompaniments. The lutenist comes to the fore in a number of solo works, displaying true virtuosity particularly in the introduction to the title track with some wonderfully precise left-hand articulated scales. The variation offered by the other instruments is appreciated and the playing is immaculate.