Tuesday, May 19, 2009

CD Review: Daniel Taylor--The Voice of Bach

World-acclaimed Canadian countertenor (and here conductor) Daniel Taylor recently recorded a CD entitled The Voice of Bach with The Choir and Orchestra of the Theatre of Early Music on the Sony BMG label. It is an evocative release with intelligently chosen selections, a sort of ‘Highlights Of…’ compilation by and for those who love and can appreciate the wondrous variety to be found in the music of Bach’s sacred vocal works.

The expansiveness and warmth of Taylor’s voice is marvelous to hear. Accompanied by an almost breathlessly sensitive and expert group of players, his seemingly effortless range and bottomless palette shine while remaining a part of the integral whole. It is not just Taylor who comes to the fore though; included are instrumental interludes, such as three delightful introductory sinfonia from different cantatas, as well as a chorale and the lushly accompanied Motet No. 4, O Jesu Christ, mein’s Lebens Licht. Arias from the Passions and the Weihnachtsoratorium are included, and soprano Agnes Zsigovics’ sprightly coloration is a welcome addition as she joins for a pair of duets from the cantatas. These performers certainly know their business, a fact that is abundantly clear on this highly polished release.

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