Eastman Chorale And Philharmonia - The Choruses From The Messiah

Thursday 1st June 1995
Eastman Chorale And Philharmonia - The Choruses From The Messiah

STYLE: Classical
RATING 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8
LABEL: Word 701892927

Reviewed by Dave Massey

When confronted by an effusion of hype on the cover I am often sure that there is going to be a recording inside which the producer is not certain is going to get anywhere on its own merits. Then I caught sight of Kurt Kaiser's moniker decorating the outside and my hopes rose. Why? Because it's a dig at establishment principles that classical music can only be made and appreciated by the pure in heart - nuff waffle. The recording itself is pretty respectable and had warmed up nicely by the time it had reached track live "For Unto Us". The opening performance of "And The Glory Of The Lord" shouted American over-indulgence and aspiring singers who think that all you have to do is wobble yer throat a bit and you are knocking on the door of Kiri Te Kanawahood. This did little to detract from the quality of the overall performance, which, as I said, gets better as the CD players rubs its little lasers together and gets stuck in to the nitty gritty. Getting back to the sleeve notes which extol the research and scholarship behind this performance, I have to give the verdict of the pleb (let's face it, few of us will ever have the time to check out some of these claims) and that is, "So what?" What I did notice is that the ornamentation is stripped away and has the pleasing effect that cleaning up an old master to reveal the vibrant colours underneath would.

The opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those held by Cross Rhythms. Any expressed views were accurate at the time of publishing but may or may not reflect the views of the individuals concerned at a later date.

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