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Bertil van Boer
Fanfare, March 2019

All are strophic, mostly homophonic, and the harmonies are conventional. Each of the composers knows how to set their works for voices without placing demands on the singers, something that is ideal for the venues in which they are performed. At the back is a musical depiction of Denmark, a land at peace. The performance by the National Vocal Ensemble is excellent, and the intonation absolutely without blemish. © 2019 Fanfare Read complete review

Ken Meltzer
Fanfare, January 2019

I found these songs a delight from start to finish. No doubt, the music itself must take the lion’s share of the credit. But the performances themselves present this music in a most favorable light. 13 of the arrangements are by the conductor on this disc, Bo Holten, an accomplished composer in his own right.

I’m delighted this disc crossed my path, and I suspect you will be similarly persuaded. Enthusiastically recommended. © 2019 Fanfare Read complete review

Henry Fogel
Fanfare, January 2019

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.

…If there is a place in your musical life for beauty of a mainly mellow sort, this disc provides it. © 2019 Fanfare Read complete review

Colin Clarke
Fanfare, January 2019

This disc is a celebration of the art of choral singing. Composer and conductor Bo Holten is renowned for his work with choirs, and the tightness of these performances is of the very highest order.

The recording (Concertkirken, Copenhagen, in February 2018) is of the very first rank, giving just the right amount of acoustic space around the choir, while the lavish production (with some simply beautiful drawings of indigenous plants taken from Flora Danica, a compilation begun in 1763 and not completed until some 123 years later) supports the professionalism of the performances. © 2019 Fanfare Read complete review

Philip Greenfield
American Record Guide, January 2019

Songs from that collection make up this program, and they are delightful. Nature and nationalism come together as blue anemones announce the end of winter, brides are wooed in moonlight, the coastline smiles as it embraces waves from the sea, fog closes in along the Kattegat, and a storm of rain and sleet is completely forgotten on a clear, crisp winter’s morning. It’s all sung with charm and a commendable flair for story-telling by the chamber choir. © 2019 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

David Vernier, November 2018

…one of the reasons we’re here is to share discoveries such as this, and hope that you may find it as rewarding and enlightening as we did.

This is what happens when a true ensemble performs as its name suggests. In an orchestra, instruments within a given section more or less sound the same—in a choir this is not the case. You have to work especially hard to refine voices into an ensemble while preserving certain individual characteristics. Listen to this, all ye choral practitioners, and despair! Or, celebrate. © 2018 Read complete review

Michael Wilkinson
MusicWeb International, October 2018

Bo Holten is a specialist in this repertoire: the Danish Vocal Ensemble are superb collaborators. The nineteen voices confidently remain light-hued and deeply sensitive, able to provide subtle variety without drawing attention to their artfulness. © 2018 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Andrew Mellor
Gramophone, September 2018

This ensemble’s [Danish National Vocal Ensemble] lightness of touch and exquisite detail are revealed best in Laub’s ‘Stille, hjerte, sol går ned’ and in the tripping textures of Nielsen’s ‘Se dig ud en sommerdag’, even if the passing chromatic harmonies are sometimes smudged. Plenty here reveals the essence of so much 20th- and 21st-century Danish music… © 2018 Gramophone Read complete review on Gramophone

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