Vaughan Williams, Peel, Butterworth & Quilter

Our rating 
4.0 out of 5 star rating 4.0

COMPOSERS: Butterworth & Quilter,Peel,Vaughan Williams
ALBUM TITLE: Collection: on the Idle Hill of Summer
WORKS: Song cycles
PERFORMER: Thomas Allen (baritone), Geoffrey Parsons (piano)
CATALOGUE NO: CDM 5 67428 2 Reissue (1990)
Allen’s singing in Butterworth’s ‘Is my team ploughing?’ is exquisite, and beautifully recorded. This isn’t ‘interpretation’ – the song simply comes to life. Elsewhere, Allen’s tone and phrasing are always admirable, but some of the other performances seem a degree or two less involving. Or is it simply that the programme lacks variety – one of the qualities which makes Bryn Terfel’s collection The Vagabond (which also includes Butterworth’s A Shropshire Lad cycle) so repeatable? It is possible to have too much idle summery beauty on one disc. Well worth sampling though. Stephen Johnson