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Robert Shaw Festival Singers - Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)

Posted By: Designol
Robert Shaw Festival Singers - Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)

Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)
Robert Shaw Festival Singers, conducted by Robert Shaw

EAC | FLAC | Image (Cue&Log) ~ 185 Mb | Mp3 (CBR320) ~ 139 Mb | Scans included
Classical, Choral, Sacred | Label: Telarc | # CD-80236 | Time: 00:52:02

Robert Shaw leads the Robert Shaw Festival Singers in these powerful works of Francis Poulenc. Poulenc experienced a spiritual crisis which led to the composition of his powerful Mass in G major, which is dedicated to the memory of his father. Paired with this work are his Four Motets for Christmas, Four Motets for a Time of Penitence, and Four Short Prayers of Saint Frances.

This CD comprises a great quantity of a cappella sacred music by the French composer Francis Poulenc. Poulenc's compositional style is hard to nail down. It is often tongue in cheek, sometimes portraying the French compositional school, sometimes greatly dissonant, sometimes intimate, other times outlandish. This disk has many of these features, but it almost seems neo-Medieval/Renaissance in presentation, but highly 20th century in harmonic language. The voice parts are extremely difficult to perform and to put together, but in the end as a listener, the music doesn't let on. The music is presented as highly spiritual through thick chords and advanced harmonies with odd clashes of dissonance on appropriate texts. Melodies are flowing, often recalling snatches of chant.

The two sets of motets, four for Christmas and four for Lent, are highly introspective and personal. The famous Timor et Tremor and O magnum mysterium are evocative of the Poulencian style, but all the same, bring to mind Palestrina. The Lenten motets give a sense of great penitence and reflection on the last days of Jesus. The Christmas motets, while still subdued, are ones more of hope and longing. Poulenc's great mastery of melody is especially noticeable in the setting of Vinea mea, making the listener want the music to never stop. The Mass in G major is the traditional mass setting minus the Credo movement. The greatest changes of tempo and mood take place here. The quicker Gloria and Sanctus show Poulenc's genius at contrasting styles, textures, and complex rhythms along with constantly shifting harmonies.

The real treasures on the disk are the four prayers of St. Francis of Assise for men's chorus. Very much reminiscent of monk's chanting, Poulenc's penchant for creative and flowing melodies is exemplified here. The subtle shifts of harmonies create a spiritual kaleidoscope of choral colors. Truly remarkable compositions.

The Robert Shaw Festival Singers perform well. The men in the prayers are nearly flawless. There is someone in the soprano 1 section that sticks out of the texture and is a bit piercing in timbre, but overall the performances shimmer. There are few recordings that can stand up to this choir, of American choirs at least, but certainly none can surpass the moments that Robert Shaw creates. If you enjoy the strains of cathedral choirs or if you are unfamiliar with these works, this might be an interesting choice for you.

Review by Brett A. Kniess (VonStupp), Amazon.com

I love Poulenc. Especially the motet O Magnum Mysterium which one choir I sing in (at Holy Name Cathedral) is performing. The director Matt Walsh recommended the Robert Shaw Festival Singers recordings of the motet so I picked this one up: And the performance is excellent, but because it's recorded with the mic some distance from the singers, you really almost hear more of the church than the choir. Some of the really beautiful harmonies are less than clear with all the reverb, including the great chord progression at the beginning of O Magnum Mysterium. Maybe it's just because I'm used to hearing it from within the choir, but I really would much prefer a close micing recording of these pieces over the version which appears here.

Review by D. A. Hosek, Amazon.com

Robert Shaw Festival Singers - Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)



Robert Shaw Festival Singers - Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)



Soprano - Donna Carter (tracks: 1 to 5)
Tenor - Christopher Cock (tracks: 14 to 17)
Robert Shaw Festival Singers
Robert Shaw, conductor

Recorded July 28, 1989 in Church of St. Pierre, Gramat, France.

Tracklist:

Mass in G major, FP 89
01. Kyrie 3:15
02. Gloria 4:07
03. Sanctus 2:29
04. Benedictus 4:04
05. Agnus Dei 4:54

Four Motets for Christmas
(Quatre motets pour le temps de Noël), FP 152
06. O magnum mysterium 3:06
07. Quem vidistis pastores 2:57
08. Videntes stellam 2:52
09. Hodie Christus natus est 1:59

Four Motets for a Time of Penitence
(Quatre motets pour un temps de pénitence, for chorus), FP 97
10. Timor et tremor 3:17
11. Vinea mea electa 3:47
12. Tenebrae factae sunt 4:07
13. Tristis est amima mea 3:24

Four Short Prayers of Saint Francis
(Quatre petites prières de Saint François d'Assise, for men's chorus), FP 142
14. Salut, Dame Sainte 2:24
15. Tout puisant, tres saint 1:21
16. Seigneur, je vous en prie 1:23
17. O mes tres chers freres et mes enfants 2:06


Exact Audio Copy V1.0 beta 3 from 29. August 2011

EAC extraction logfile from 15. August 2013, 23:01

Robert Shaw Festival Singers / Mass in G Major

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foobar2000 1.2 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1
log date: 2018-02-06 17:21:43

––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
Analyzed: Robert Shaw Festival Singers / Mass in G Major
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

DR Peak RMS Duration Track
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––
DR13 -4.81 dB -23.01 dB 3:17 01-Mass in G Major. I Kyrie
DR14 -2.58 dB -22.63 dB 4:08 02-Mass in G Major. II Gloria
DR12 -4.03 dB -20.30 dB 2:31 03-Mass in G Major. III Sanctus
DR13 -4.02 dB -22.87 dB 4:05 04-Mass in G Major. IV Benedictus
DR13 -8.49 dB -27.21 dB 4:56 05-Mass in G Major. V Agnus Dei
DR14 -5.66 dB -26.72 dB 3:08 06-Motets for Christmas. I O magnum myster
DR15 -5.57 dB -25.06 dB 2:59 07-Motets for Christmas. II Quem vidistis
DR15 -4.22 dB -26.35 dB 2:55 08-Motets for Christmas. III Videntes stel
DR14 -3.11 dB -23.10 dB 2:01 09-Motets for Christmas. IV Hodie Christus
DR12 -4.54 dB -22.91 dB 3:19 10-Motets for Lent. I Timor et tremor
DR13 -5.41 dB -24.07 dB 3:48 11-Motets for Lent. II Vinea mea electa
DR13 -5.46 dB -25.06 dB 4:09 12-Motets for Lent. III Tenebrae factae su
DR13 -5.66 dB -26.26 dB 3:25 13-Motets for Lent. IV Tristis est anima m
DR12 -14.58 dB -33.50 dB 2:26 14-Prayers for St. Francis. I Salut, Dame
DR12 -13.68 dB -31.33 dB 1:23 15-Prayers for St. Francis. II Tout puisan
DR13 -11.34 dB -32.16 dB 1:24 16-Prayers for St. Francis. III Seigneur
DR14 -10.23 dB -32.16 dB 2:06 17-Prayers for St. Francis. IV O mes tres
––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––––

Number of tracks: 17
Official DR value: DR13

Samplerate: 44100 Hz
Channels: 2
Bits per sample: 16
Bitrate: 444 kbps
Codec: FLAC
================================================================================

Robert Shaw Festival Singers - Francis Poulenc: Mass In G Major; Motets For Christmas And Lent (1990)

All thanks to original releaser - Dementio81

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