Vaughan Williams - James Gilchrist - Independent on Sunday

A E Housman's ‘A Shropshire Lad' poems provided texts for a couple of generations of English composers to set. Here are two of the best, with Vaughan Williams's vivid "On Wenlock Edge" cycle matched with Ivor Gurney's "Ludlow & Teme", written not long before the shell-shocked soldier / composer / poet was incarcerated in a mental institution. Both of them capture the sense of loss of the originals in music alternately windswept and haunted. Bliss's "Elegiac Sonnet" and Warlock's Yeatsian "The Curlew" complete the disc, with James Gilchrist the fine-grained tenor and excellent support from the Fitzwilliams.

26 August 2007