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Abigail Gostick, Choral Scholar (2009 - 2012)
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ICE LAND: The Eternal Music

Original release date: 2022
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Icelandic music of the last half century is the focus of this recording by the Choir of Clare College, Cambridge, led by its conductor, Graham Ross. Born from his close collaboration with the native composers of the “Land of Fire and Ice,” this programme sets out to explore and highlight their hypnotic soundworld, instinctively leaning towards contemplation. A prime example is the touchingly beautiful Requiem by Sigurður Sævarsson, which here receives its world premiere recording.

 

"An ethereal, escapist set of recordings from the Cambrigde choir, bringing together Icelandic choral music from the last half-century. Saevarsson's Requiem forms the centrepiece - a hypnotic, reflective wonder."

5★ BBC Music Magazine

 

"An entrancing sound world...Ross and his choir are on top form throughout the disc"

4★ Planet Hugill

 

"The beauty of Ross' program is that it finds a thread linking the contemporary language of Anna Thorvaldsdóttir, the more traditional Þorkell Sigurbjörnsson, the rock avant-garde of Sigur Rós, and various mixtures of these. The performances from the young Clare College choristers are superb...A beautiful and valuable release."

5★ AllMusic.com

 

"Unlike most multi-composer projects, there is consistency with variety, a common commitment to the kind of slow, drone-based music one might associate with the ECM label, but done here with a freshness and simplicity of diction that reflects the Clare voices at their best. The singing is glorious and the programming faultless."

Choir and Organ

 

"...the choir’s flexibility in capturing subtly different moods is plain..."

Presto Music (Recording of the Week)

 

"Great album, highly recommended"

"The ambient aura of the album is resolutely contemplative and rarely stirred by dynamic movements more intense than a placid ether."

"Saevarsson’s a cappella Requiem is particularly therapeutic, as peaceful as a body in weightlessness."

"...this is a choral symphony of beauty shrouded in reverence, mystery, emotion and great spirituality."

PANM260

 

"...contemporary and timeless at the same time..."

muziekweb

 

"Each and every one of them beautiful, unhurried, polyphonic music, in which the cold, crystal clear atmosphere of the special island is made audible in an almost weightless way."

"New simplicity at its very best, which gives a soothing, unpretentious, meditative rest..."

Klassieke Zaken

 

"...stunningly beautiful collection of choral pieces by Icelandic composers..."

"The Choir of Clare College have clearly been at pains to perform this music idiomatically, aand their performances are quietly thirlling. And I simply can't praise Saevarsson's Requiem setting highly enough; although the piece is thoroughly modern, it nevertheless invokes a timeless sense of reverence, regret and devotion. A must have for all library collections."

AllMusic

 

Anna Thorvaldsdóttir

Þorkell Sigurbjörnsson

Tryggvi M. Baldvinsson

Hjálmar H. Ragnarsson

Anna Thorvaldsdóttir

Sigurður Sævarsson

Atli Heimir Sveinsson

Jón Ásgeirsson

Snorri Sigfús Birgisson

Jón Leifs

Sigurður Sævarsson

Sigur Rós / arr. Guy Button

£15.00

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