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Philip Greenfield
American Record Guide, July 2013

It’s hard to imagine this music performed with more authority than it is here. Superb engineering and a full-service booklet from the folks at DaCapo clinch the deal on a unique and valuable release. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

John Quinn
MusicWeb International, May 2013

…most of the music is impressive. It’s original, inventive and shows a tremendous affinity for choirs, as you’d expect given Bo Holten’s huge experience as a choral conductor. The performances under the composer’s own direction must surely be definitive. Certainly there need be no reservations on account of the performance standards since the Flemish Radio Choir here shows itself to be a highly accomplished and flexible ensemble. The recorded sound is very good, showing the performances in the best possible light and the well-produced booklet includes a very helpful note. © 2013 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Malcolm Riley
Gramophone, May 2013

The disc’s most substantial work is the set of five Cantigas d’amigo…The delicious clusters towards the end of ‘Leila Doura’ are an unexpected delight.

In terms of pure vocal pleasure, Holten’s arrangement of one of Mahler’s Rückert-Lieder takes the first prize. In addition to Johan Reuter’s superb baritone solo, special praise should go to Hilde Venken for her stratospheric vocalising. Well worth exploring. © 2013 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

David Denton
David's Review Corner, January 2013

Bo Holten is one of today’s most highly regarded Danish conductors and composers, yet in both he is self taught, having studied the bassoon at college. The present disc covers works composed in the 21st century and which state that his tonality credentials provide him with all the fresh sounds he needs to enliven his music. At times he moves into that more ethereal quality that is very much in vogue, but it is largely characterised by a strongly rhythmic content. In date order we begin with the setting of Psalm 23 containing some of the well-known words in Christianity: ‘The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want’. The setting expresses the whole psalm with considerable passion and fervour, and concludes in serene peace. Three years later, in Rota Veneris (Venus’s Wheel), he set three love poems, not in an erotic mode, though he has never composed anything more beautiful that the second one, Aprili tempore. That Holten has a sense of musical humour came the following year with Handel with Care (Variations on Darwin). It was written to a commission for a work to mark the 250th anniversary of the death of Handel which coincided with the 150th anniversary of the birth of Darwin, the creator of the theory of evolution. The male voices suggest the inevitable progress forward Darwin espouse, while in the female voices you will recognise snippets of Handel. Five quite short pieces for female voices speak of love in Cantigas d’amigo, then back to the disc’s first track for Romische Elegien completed in 2011. A lyric score with a baritone solo coming very much from the late Romantic era, and with more than a hint of Wagner. The singing of the Flemish Radio Choir sounds gorgeous, and with the composer conducting, we can take the performances as definitive. Outstanding sound quality. © 2013 David’s Review Corner

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