Fanfare (US) "In short, this is a delightful recording".
October 5, 2018
Henry Fogel, Fanfare
ÅRSTIDERNE: 28 Danish Songs Bo Holten, cond; Danish Natl Vocal Ens OUR 8226911 (67:44)
Songs by NIELSEN, SCHIERBECK, HARDER, RUNG, JEPPESEN, HANSEN, SCHULTZ, RING, LAUB, BALSLEV, WEJSLEV, MORTENSEN, HAMBURGER, K. LARSEN, AAGAARD
There is a strong choral tradition throughout Scandinavia, and this disc is one more representation of that. Årstiderne translates as “The Seasons,” and as is so frequently the case with Scandinavian songs, the subject here is almost exclusively the wonders of nature. Most of these songs are by composers likely to be unknown to even most Fanfare readers, though there are a handful of truly lovely ones by Carl Nielsen. Other composers who stand out include Henrik Rung, Oluf Ring, and Thomas Laub. But the truth is that these songs are all lovely. For the most part they are gentle, lyrical statements with titles such as “Wandering in the Forest,” “Now Leaves Are Glowing in the Groves,” “The Blue Anemone,” and “Awakening (for all the little flowers).”
Nothing deeply probing is to be found here, but if there is a place in your musical life for beauty of a mainly mellow sort, this disc provides it. While the booklet only includes Danish texts (along with helpful bi-lingual notes), complete side-by-side Danish-English texts can be downloaded from www.ourrecordings.com. The chorus sings with impeccable intonation and blend, and with a strong sense of involvement. The recorded sound is fairly spacious and distant, assuring that no single voice stands out from that blend. In short, this is a delightful recording.
Henry Fogel, Fanfare August 2018