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Ronald E. Grames
Fanfare, March 2015

The orchestra, conducted by the composer, is staggeringly good, especially in Black Pentecost, with its percussion pounding home the violence, and winds and strings drunkenly weaving the nightmarish image of progress plowing under lives and culture.

Highly recommended. © 2015 Fanfare Read complete review



John Whitmore
MusicWeb International, February 2015

Stone Litany is a symphonic work in a single movement containing seven sections. The orchestration is lush, bright and shimmering. The silky vocal melisma is beautifully sung by Della Jones and the playing of the BBC Philharmonic for the composer is top class, as it is in Black Pentecost. © 2015 MusicWeb International Read complete review



David Denton
David's Review Corner, September 2014

The destruction of the environment and the natural beauty of the world around us is the emotive theme of Peter Maxwell Davies’s vocal symphony, Black Pentecost. Its words foretell the events that would follow the arrival of the mining company on the Orkney Islands in the southern extremes of Scotland, and the decimation of its farming community. Subtitled Runes from the House of the Dead, it takes its name from the inscriptions left by the Viking plunderers of the islands in the eleventh and twelfth centuries. With the composer conducting, we can take these as benchmark performances that were immaculately recorded in the BBC’s Manchester studio in 1992. © 2014 David’s Review Corner





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