Formed in 1997, The Cracow Klezmer Band is a phenomena. Through their spectacular combination of impeccable musicianship, imaginative arrangements and passionate performances they have been universally acclaimed by audiences and critics alike, developing into one of the most successful and exciting acoustic groups in the world. Here they are joined by the lush sound of strings, as Bester turns his prodigious arranging skills to eight new songs from Zorn’s fabulous and varied Book of Angels. Also featuring the Cracow String Quartet this is their best CD to date.
This release is part of a set of Bach cantata recordings by the Belgian group Il Gardellino and director Marcel Ponseele: not an entire new Bach cantata cycle but a set of thematically oriented recordings that may also include works by other composers. "De profundis" (from the depths) offers three cantatas based on Psalm 130, which begins with the words "From the depths I cry to thee, Lord" and was translated into German in several ways.
In 'De Profundis', fast rising jazz singer Natalia Mateo combines the worlds of jazz, Polish folk, and singer-songwriting into a mesmerizing game of illusion. The album is inspired by Mateo s Polish origins, by the influences of her adoptive city of Berlin, and by artists who defy convention like Björk and Joni Mitchell. Mateo captivates the listener with her intensity as much as her restraint. Judiciously sparse instrumentation creates a sense of intimacy and a unique sound. Through originals and covers, singing that can be both gentle/lyrical and angular/punchy, 'De Profundis' reveals Natalia Mateo s individuality in full.
This is a good selection of motets because it hardly duplicates the last two such discs. On Orlando Consort’s collection of Josquin’s motets ( Fanfare 34:1), only Read more is heard, and none of them are on David Skinner’s more varied disc (33:1). It follows another Josquin disc by Cordes (35:6), though it was recorded a year later, a fine offering that unfortunately had to compete with an excellent recording of a Mass in Peter Phillips’s ongoing series.
Paul Hillier’s Theatre of Voices, like the Hilliard Ensemble with whom he was associated before settling in America, have given the music of Arvo Part a prominent place in their repertoire. Hillier has also written a book on Part – from which his notes accompanying this CD are mostly drawn (The Music of Arvo Part; OUP: 1997) – and in the collective interview run in last September’s issue (page 14) he described his first encounter with several of Part’s scores, “Something leapt out at me: this was the kind of music I had been waiting to perform”.