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The Contrast - English Poetry in Song

Composer Frank Bridge
Roger Quilter
Ralph Vaughan Williams
Sir William Walton
Huw Watkins
Performer Joseph Middleton
Carolyn Sampson
Period Modern
Catalogue Number BIS-2413 SACD
EAN 7318599924137
Format SACD Hybrid

This hybrid disc plays on both CD and SACD players
SACD Surround - SACD Stereo - CD Stereo

Release date Feb 2020
Total time 81'06

Song composition has been a constant in British music since the lute and consort works of the early seventeenth century. By 1900, it had developed into a sophisticated genre embraced by almost all serious composers. The music on this amply-filled disc illustrates the diversity of British song-writing and its transformation over a century: from Vaughan Williams’s Orpheus and his Lute (ca 1901) to Huw Watkins’s Five Larkin Songs, composed in 2010 for Carolyn Sampson, who performs them here.

Together with Joseph Middleton, her partner on several acclaimed recital discs, she has devised a highly contrasting programme bookended by two groups of songs by William Walton – A Song for the Lord Mayor's Table from 1962, celebrating the diversity of London, and three songs from Façade, the ‘entertainment’ with which the young composer gained both fame and notoriety in 1923.These frame settings by Ralph Vaughan Williams, Roger Quilter and Frank Bridge of poetry by writers from Shakespeare and Shelley to Keats and Yeats. In comparison, the anti-romantic poems by Philip Larkin have been described as marked by ‘a very English, glum accuracy’. Huw Watkins (b. 1976) has selected texts from across Larkin’s output, catching the various moods – ranging from a certain unsentimental nostalgia to the poet’s seemingly habitual pessimism – in settings that often carry a bittersweet sting in the tail.
Choose format
  Sir William Walton
  A Song for the Lord Mayor’s Table 16'01
01 The Lord Mayor’s Table 3'14
02 Glide gently 2'43
03 Wapping Old Stairs 2'20
04 Holy Thursday 3'07
05 The Contrast 2'45
06 Rhyme 1'52
  Ralph Vaughan Williams
07 Orpheus with his lute 2'59
08 The sky above the roof  2'39
09 Silent Noon 4'03
  Frank Bridge
10 Go not, happy day 1'18
11 When most I wink 2'41
12 Adoration 2'50
13 Come to me in my dreams 3'38
14 When you are old 3'54
15 Mantle of Blue  2'12
16 Love went a-riding 1'41
  Huw Watkins
  Five Larkin Songs 12'08
17 Who called love conquering 2'45
18 Wants 1'37
19 Love Songs in Age 3'26
20 Money 1'47
21 Dawn 2'33
  Roger Quilter
22 Dream Valley, Op. 20 No. 1 2'14
23 Fair House of Joy, Op. 12 No. 7 1'46
24 By a Fountainside, Op. 12 No. 6 2'56
25 Arab Love Song 1'17
26 Autumn Evening, Op. 14 No. 1 2'53
27 My Life’s Delight, Op. 12 No. 2 1'34
  Sir William Walton
  Three Façade Settings 8'53
28 Daphne 2'58
29 Through gilded trellises 3'58
30 Old Sir Faulk 1'57
  Album total 81'06
ComposerBridge, Frank
Quilter, Roger
Vaughan Williams, Ralph
Walton, Sir William
Watkins, Huw
PerformerMiddleton, Joseph
Sampson, Carolyn

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