RECORDINGS

LABEL: THE DOWNSIDE SCHOLA CANTORUM
CATALOG NUMBER: N/A
UPC NUMBER: N/A
NUMBER OF DISCS: 1
RUNNING TIME: 1:13:45
YEAR RECORDED: MARCH 26, 2000
CD RELEASE DATE: 2000
CONDUCTOR: CHRISTOPHER TAMBLING
ORCHESTRA: THE DOWNSIDE CHAMBER ORCHESTRA
CHOIR: THE DOWNSIDE SCHOLA CANTORUM
TREBLES: HENRY HUDSON-EVANS, BENJAMIN TAMBLING, FREDDIE NORTON
ALTO: JOHN TULLY
TENORS: CHRISTOHER BUCKNALL, GEORGE NORTON, WILLIAM EDWARDS
BASS: FRANCIS TULLY, BARNABY BEER, DOMiNIC TIGHE, BENEDICT CARTER


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DISC ONE

1. Comfort Ye My People (Christopher Bucknall)
2. And The Glory Of The Lord
3. Thus Saith The Lord (Francis Tully)
4. And He Shall Purify
5. O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion (John Tully)
6. For behold, darkness (Barnaby Beer)
7. The people that walked in darkness (Dominic Tighe)
8. For unto us a child is born
9. And the angel said unto them (Henry Hudson-Evans)
10. And suddenly there was (Benjamin Tambling)
11. Glory to God
12. Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion (Freddie Norton)
13. His yoke is easy, and his burthen is light
14. Surely, he has borne our griefs
15. And with his stripes we are healed
16. All we like sheep have gone astray
17. All they that see him (Christopher Bucknall)
18. He trusted in god
19. Thy rebuke hath broken his heart (George Norton)
20. But thou didst not leave (William Edwards)
21. Hallelujah
22. Since by man came death
23. Behold I tell you a mystery (Dominic Tighe)
24. The trumpet shall sound (Barnaby Beer, Benedict Carter & Dominic Tighe)
25. Worthy is the lamb that was slain

SITE RATING:  1/10
SITE REVIEW:  I believe this is a private release, as it was recorded on CD-R, and the inserts also appear to be hand-made on a laser printer.  And as much as I expect most English choral schools to be of high quality, I was expecting perhaps more than necessary, as this performance and recording is of very low quality.  Although the orchestra seems to be fairly proficient, the soloists, chorus, and direction is all tentative and delivers a performance that, in all fairness, could only be loved by their mothers.  Pitches are continually problematic, melismas are slurred through is a rather frightening manner, and tempos can best be described as "lurching."  Imagine, if you will, a beginner's class on baroque music deciding to give a concert after, perhaps, a week of preparation - that's about the level of expertise and finesse you'll find here.  In fact, when I first received the disc, I was in doubt I would be able to listen to it at all; seventeen years is a long time for a CD-R to keep it's data intact, and the disc would not play on three different players I tried!  Eventually, I was able to extract the music onto my computer in high-quality .wav files, but even so, there is much static and crackling present throughout - but even these couldn't hide the fact that this was a fairly dire concert.  Here's hoping that the Downside Schola Cantorum has seen a large bump in the quality of it's music program in the time since this program was recorded.


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