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Hyperion Records

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About 2500 Tigers (2008) by Charlie Baird (b1955)
Private Collection / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67747
Recording details: August 2008
Ely Cathedral, United Kingdom
Produced by Adrian Peacock
Engineered by David Hinitt
Release date: February 2010
Total duration: 10 minutes 30 seconds

'A fascinating collection of choral works … centring on a Mass setting by Latvian Uģis Prauliņš … probably the single most impressive moment in the work is the end of the Credo, whose increasing waves of spoken affirmation of faith are haloed by bell-like choral roulades … Einfelde's music is altogether more introverted, darker than that of Prauliņš but beautifully crafted and jewel-like … [Angelis suis Dominis and Pater noster by Miškinis] are works of absolutely luminous beauty' (Gramophone)

'The Choir of Trinity College Cambridge enjoys the urgent heartbeat of this music … Missa Rigensis contains many wonders, including a buoyant Gloria which vanishes magically into the long acoustic perspectives of the Lady Chapel, Ely Cathedral, where this disc was most sensitively produced and engineered  … Stephen Layton conducts this music with all the rigour, colour and craft characteristic of his work' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Stephen Layton conducts vital and immaculate performances. These works must be quite taxing and they’re not always as simple or as straightforward as they may sound. The singing is a pure joy from first to last. The recording lends an appropriately reverberant aura to the music. This splendid release perfectly complements Hyperion’s disc devoted to Dubra’s choral music, enthusiastically reviewed here a few months ago (Hail, Queen of Heaven). This disc will appeal strongly to all lovers of imaginative choral music, but others—I am sure—will find much to relish' (MusicWeb International)

'Soaring melodies, folklike tunes, drones with religious gravity, and stylized speech are all encompassed by these works, the biggest among them being Uģis Prauliņš' Missa Rigensis—one of the most original and personal settings of the Mass text imaginable. Best of all, this is a disc to live with: There's much to enjoy on first hearing, but all the pieces have dramatic new revelations on subsequent encounters' (The Philadelphia Inquirer, USA)

Laudibus in sanctis
composer
2008; composed for and dedicated to Stephen Layton and Trinity College Choir Cambridge
author of text
Psalm 150, paraphrased

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Exultation of a flamboyant kind is the subject of Laudibus in sanctis. Specially written for and dedicated to Stephen Layton, it is an example of Ugis Praulinš’s undoctrinaire approach to composition, where ‘everything is possible and nothing is absolute’, an open-hearted attitude Praulinš attributes to his background in rock music. Also from rock music, surely, comes the insistent rhythmic drive of much of the music, while the filigree ornamentation is decidedly Baroque. Baroque, too, is the cast of this extended setting of Psalm 150 as a multi-sectional cantata, as are the sustained antiphonal writing and the solo/tutti exchanges. Yet for all its eclecticism of reference the piece has a compelling unity of purpose which reflects the unceasing joyfulness of the words. The sturdy opening pages are an exhaustive and exhilarating exploration of A minor; throughout the piece the chords are frequently of massive density, yet are never opaque, and for the final exhortation (‘Let everything in the world that feeds upon the air of heaven’) the composer summons up music of dazzling brilliance and abandon.

from notes by Gabriel Jackson © 2010

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