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A Worcester Ladymass

5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Audio CD, March 15, 2011
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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

2011 album from the Swedish troupe, their first new recording in four years as well as the first of their discs since Stella Maris (2005) to incorporate the medieval sacred music for which their vocal sound seems so eminently suited. As England' s Daily telegraph observed, "The word `mellifluous' might almost have been coined to describe the distinctively pure, cool sound of Trio Mediaeval's three female voices. It has an alluring quality all its own, which makes everything they sing - from the earliest polyphony to newly composed pieces which, to some extent, inhabit the same sound-world - wonderfully rewarding to listen to."

Review

"The three female voices combine to produce a sound of extraordinary and consoling beauty. The singers also operate on a high level of musicianship and technical sophistication..." -- The Boston Globe
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 15, 2011)
  • SPARS Code: DDD
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: ECM New Series
  • ASIN: B004IXPXGG
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #62,169 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Perhaps as a result of his recasting of medieval Lauds for the 2005 "Oi Me Lasso" -- performed by Anna Maria Friman of Trio Mediaeval -- Gavin Bryars was asked to complete this Ladymass by composing two missing pieces, the 5:14 "Credo" and the 1:19 closing "Benedicamus Domino". Like his work for "Oi Me Lasso", Bryars takes the basic polyphonic material and style of the period and gently lifts it into greater harmonic complexity. The contrast this creates within the Worcester Ladymass is both subtle and profoundly moving, shading the understated beauty of 13th Century sacred music with a hovering, shimmering 21st century harmonic depth left untouched -- or simply not understood -- by these anonymous precursors. The story of where and how these pieces were found and restored is fascinating, and again gives us pause concerning the many points in history during which religious zeal lead to the destruction and often complete elimination of remarkable and rare works of art and understanding. As for the recording itself, my ears find this performance to be more spare and focused than much of the A4 catalog. The Propstei St. Gerold soundstage as presented in this recording seems much drier and consequently more specific than many other spaces. The smaller scale space seems wholly appropriate to the compositional period, offering an authentic sense of austerity and beauty that is more completely reliant on the performance itself.
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Trio Medieval sounds very much like Anonymous 4. If you like the one, you will like the other. This CD is very well recorded. The sound is full and fabulous without any harshness. The voices roll out of the speakers like the waves on the album cover and the listener easily becomes submerged in the sound and the beauty.
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Their voices are heavenly and soothing, they touch the soul!
I first heard them sing on public radio and actually pulled over to write down the name so I would not forget, and immediately ordered it off amazon when I got home! So happy I did! Its a wonderful addition to my collection!!
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