WORKS: Christmas Carols and Songs
PERFORMER: Taverner Consort/Andrew Parrott
CATALOGUE NO: 7 54902 2 DDD
Andrew Parrott’s The New Oxford Book of Carols heralded fresh interest in styles of performance practice eroded since the Victorians. One of the most important was the 18th century West Gallery tradition(???): an energetic, earthy, accessible approach, rooted in the medieval past.
The Taverner Consort’s Carol Album II is a lively, stylish hodge-podge spanning a range of neglected traditions. Period instruments – trumpets, fiddle and struck dulcimer – are excellent. The solo ballad ‘All hayle to the dayes’ is just one of the many gems uneathed. What we need next, I suspect, are a dozen revolutions in historic pronunciation.