Phantasm - Ward: Consort Music for Five and Six Viols (2009)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/192 kHz | Time - 77:41 minutes | 2.89 GB
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Artwork: Digital booklet
The booklet notes for this Scottish audiophile release, perhaps surprisingly in view of American-British annotator and group leader Laurence Dreyfus' background in academic musicology, are models of their kind. They make the best possible case for the viol music of early seventeenth century composer John Ward, who usually plays third or fourth fiddle (or viol) to Gibbons, Dowland, Purcell, and even John Jenkins among general listeners and specialists alike. In both his prose (given in English only) and his interpretations, Dreyfus and his Phantasm consort capture the pleasantly meandering quality of Ward's viol pieces, which lack the melancholy of Dowland's, the pungent and daring dissonance of Gibbons', or the general brilliance of Purcell's.