Lawrence Power has joined regular collaborator Simon Crawford-Phillips to record the mellifluous Violin Sonatina & Viola Sonata by Arthur Benjamin—an album of significant interest, and not just for being Lawrence's first recorded outing on the violin rather than his more usual viola.
The enthralling all-male Cinquecento has recorded an unusual programme of secular works: Amorosi pensieri – Songs for the Habsburg Court features music by the contrasting characters of Philippe de Monte, Jean Guyot, Jacobus Vaet and Jacob Regnart. Just how close secular and sacred could be is dazzlingly on show in Carolyn Sampson's A French Baroque Diva – Arias for Marie Fel. Psalms and Hymns of praise (Lalande, Rousseau, Fiocco, Mondonville) seamlessly intertwine with outrageously florid operatic fancies (Lacoste, Rameau, Mondonville), the singers and players of Ex Cathedra being steered faultlessly through all by Jeffrey Skidmore.
From Linn this month we have The Tudors at Prayer, an opulent programme of Taverner, Mundy, Byrd and White performed by masters of this repertoire Magnificat and Philip Cave.