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Hyperion Records

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Portrait of Elizabeth I (The Armada Portrait) in the manner of George Gower (1540-1596).
Private Collection / Photo © Philip Mould Ltd, London / Bridgeman Art Library, London
Track(s) taken from CDA67937
Recording details: November 2011
Fitzalan Chapel, Arundel Castle, United Kingdom
Produced by Jonathan Freeman-Attwood
Engineered by Martin Haskell & Iestyn Rees
Release date: October 2012
Total duration: 4 minutes 5 seconds

'The singing is neat, clear and fluid, with beautifully elastic phrasing from the two tenors. The Nunc dimittis provides the sweetest moments in the Great Service itself' (BBC Music Magazine)

'The 10 voices of the Cardinall's Musick launch into the opening of Byrd's The Great Service—'O come, let us sing unto the Lord'—with a soaring joyfulness and clarity that sustains throughout this large-scale and elaborate work. Andrew Carwood and his group have won countless accolades for their series of Byrd's Latin sacred music. In this Anglican work, they achieve the same outstanding level of musicianship. The (female) sopranos have strength and purity at the top but an effective lightness, too, closer to the sound of boy trebles. The full ensemble tone is bold and energetic' (The Observer)

'This new recording is something special. Whether it's because of the sheer experience of having sung so much of Byrd's music as to have assimilated his musical language utterly, or whether it's simply the raw musicianship and cultivated intelligence of the performers, there's a clarity and intensity in each verse that is spine-tingling … here, as elsewhere, the latent energy of the words as made manifest in Byrd's setting is realized with the kind of skill and conviction that moves rather than simply amazes. Which is, I guess, the point of religious music' (International Record Review)

Unto the hills mine eyes I lift
composer
Songs of Sundrie Natures, 1589, xlv; AATTBB
author of text
Psalm 121

Introduction  EnglishFrançaisDeutsch
Byrd's setting of Unto the hills mine eyes I lift (Psalm 121) is drawn from his collection entitled Songs of Sundrie Natures from 1589. It has its roots in the past and sounds a little reminiscent of the old Flemish style of imitation such as used by Robert Parsons in his anthem Deliver me from mine enemies.

from notes by Andrew Carwood © 2012

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