Aureole etc.

Golden Age singers

Nimbus on-line

Faure songs
Charlotte de Rothschild (soprano);

  Founder: Len Mullenger
Classical Editor: Rob Barnett

AVAILABILITY: £5.00 + £1.00 p&p (enquire for overseas rates)
Jonathan N Richards
99 Cambrian Drive
Colwyn Bay
North Wales LL28 4SY
01492 544259

Andrea Edmondson
11 Kestrel Close
Leics LE10 2PA
01455 250416
07976 308500







Jonathan N Richards (guitar)
Andrea Edmondson (flute)
rec. 2002, Angel Studios
ANDIDISX@D No Number [18.30]

Here is music consistently pleasing to ear and mind. None of it breaks new stylistic ground. None of it slaps you in the face or bewilders or cheats the expectations naturally raised by placing flute with guitar. It is in the best sense of the phrase ‘easy listening’ to which you can attend either with intent and satisfied concentration or let your thoughts drift off to some other subject knowing that when you re-engage you will be welcomed by invention and grace.

The composers all convince you that their centre of gravity lies with shapely melody succinctly expressed rather than expansive development and garrulous meandering. So what are the bounds and limits of the music? You need to think in terms of Stanley Myers' Cavatina, the woodwind writing in Sean Davey's Granuaile, Fauré's Pavane, Poulenc's early chansons, Debussy's Faune. While there are elements of green ruralia britannica, you will also detect themes and treatments with a Celtic curve and a Mediterranean gleam. You do not need to think about jazz, dodecaphony, commercial pop culture or minimalism.

Lullaby was written originally as a song for soprano and guitar. The ‘lie’ of the flute writing may well remind you of Dubh Darra, the first song in Sean Davey’s shamefully little-known song cycle Granuaile. Romance has a grave and steady beauty. This is the original format of the piece. In 1998 it was premiered as Romance for guitar and orchestra. Greenwood is light and bustling with a flavour of medieval antiquity and rustic pursuits. It is based on the melody The Woods So Wild from Playford's Fancy. Idyll was written in 2002. It too seems to look back to Medieval courtly ideals through the same lens as Nino Rota in his music for the 1970s film of Romeo and Juliet. Nocturne was originally one of a pair of pieces for two guitars. It gracefully blends music of a character similar to Fauré’s wonderful Pavane with the style of Villa-Lobos’s set of guitar preludes. Lastly, Caprice is from 1983 and is buzzingly rife with Iberian atmosphere: warmth and the cool of the splashing fountains of the Alhambra. Surely the composers had absorbed the experience of Tarrega’s guitar music.

The three composers and artists are linked by a friendship which is apparent from this pleasing and affectionate anthology.


Rob Barnett


Return to Index

Untitled Document

Reviews from previous months
Join the mailing list and receive a hyperlinked weekly update on the discs reviewed. details
We welcome feedback on our reviews. Please use the Bulletin Board
Please paste in the first line of your comments the URL of the review to which you refer.