MusicWeb International One of the most grown-up review sites around 2024
60,000 reviews
... and still writing ...

Search MusicWeb Here Acte Prealable Polish CDs

Presto Music CD retailer
Founder: Len Mullenger                                    Editor in Chief:John Quinn             

Some items
to consider

new MWI
Current reviews

old MWI
pre-2023 reviews

paid for

Acte Prealable Polish recordings

Forgotten Recordings
Forgotten Recordings
All Forgotten Records Reviews

Troubadisc Weinberg- TROCD01450

All Troubadisc reviews

FOGHORN Classics

Brahms String Quartets

All Foghorn Reviews

All HDTT reviews

Songs to Harp from
the Old and New World

all Nimbus reviews

all tudor reviews

Follow us on Twitter

Editorial Board
MusicWeb International
Founding Editor
Rob Barnett
Editor in Chief
John Quinn
Contributing Editor
Ralph Moore
   David Barker
Jonathan Woolf
MusicWeb Founder
   Len Mullenger

Support us financially by purchasing this from

Ralph VAUGHAN WILLIAMS (1872-1958)
Songs of Travel (1901-04) [24:20]
Six Studies in English Folk Song (1926) [8:53]
The Sky above the Roof (1908) [2:50]
Orpheus with his Lute (1902) [2:35]
Silent Noon (1903) [3:57]
The Winter’s Willow (1903) [3:12]
Romance for Viola and Piano [6:38]
Rhosymedre (1920, arr. for tenor, viola & piano by Richard Morrison, 2016) [3:47]
Four Hymns (1912-14) [14:29]
James Gilchrist (tenor)
Anna Tilbrook (piano)
Philip Dukes (viola)
rec. 2017, Potton Hall, Dunwich, Suffolk.
Texts included
CHANDOS CHAN10969 [71:31]

I was compelled to listen to this CD after reading John Quinn’s enthusiastic review because to date I have never been completely satisfied with any recording of RVW’s lovely song cycle Songs of Travel. I do recommend John’s fine and detailed review which can be read via the link provided at the beginning of this paragraph.

Choice of singer is very much a personal issue, so dependent on timbre, sense of line and interpretation - overt and subtle – of the verses etc. etc. James Gilchrist certainly fulfils these criteria well enough but for me there is not sufficient emotional involvement. What do I mean by that? Well, at this point, I have to admit to being something less of a purist as far as these Songs of Travel are concerned, for I have a particular affection for RVW’s and his assistant, Roy Douglas’s arrangements for orchestra (RVW: 1,3 and 8; and Douglas, the remainder), but, in particular, I have always treasured the 1983 EMI recording with Thomas Allen and the City of Birmingham S.O. conducted by Simon Rattle.  Thomas Allen brings deep sincerity and emotional intensity to these songs. I can listen to this performance over and over again. I am unashamed to say that tears stand in my eyes whenever I listen to it, especially Allen’s rendering of ‘Whither must I wander’ and ‘Bright is the ring of words.’ As far as I know this is the only recording of this orchestral version. EMI also made it available as part of a 9 CD RVW collection.  

I heartily agree with the enthusiasm for the excellent support that Anna Tilbrook gives. I found that time and time again my ear was seduced away to her refined and sensitive accompaniments – and her involvement in the non-vocal pieces.

On balance, I find I agree with John Quinn in all respects about this new Chandos release which can be confidently recommended to RVW and English song enthusiasts.

Ian Lace

[As I write, I am sitting just yards away in Westbourne, Bournemouth where Robert Louis Stevenson, who wrote the Songs of Travel verses, once lived].

Previous review: John Quinn


Advertising on

Donate and keep us afloat


New Releases

Naxos Classical
All Naxos reviews

Chandos recordings
All Chandos reviews

Hyperion recordings
All Hyperion reviews

Foghorn recordings
All Foghorn reviews

Troubadisc recordings
All Troubadisc reviews

all Bridge reviews

all cpo reviews

Divine Art recordings
Click to see New Releases
Get 10% off using code musicweb10
All Divine Art reviews

All Eloquence reviews

Lyrita recordings
All Lyrita Reviews


Wyastone New Releases
Obtain 10% discount

Subscribe to our free weekly review listing