1 800 222 6872

Ravel: Songs / Finley, Drake

Album Summary

>Ravel, Maurice : Histoires naturelles
>Ravel, Maurice : Ronsard à son âme
>Ravel, Maurice : Don Quichotte à Dulcinée
>Ravel, Maurice : Un grand sommeil noir
>Ravel, Maurice : Les grands vents venus d'outre-mer
>Ravel, Maurice : Sur l'herbe
>Ravel, Maurice : Chants populaires
>Ravel, Maurice : Noël des jouets
>Ravel, Maurice : Épigrammes (2) de Clément Marot
>Ravel, Maurice : Mélodies populaires grecques (5)
>Ravel, Maurice : Mélodies hébraïques (2)
Performers Composer

Notes & Reviews:

"As we have heard in previous recordings, Finley's voice is pure pleasure--73 minutes goes by easily and effortlessly, and whether it's French or German or English, it doesn't matter because whatever the language or repertoire he unfailingly communicates the essence of the music and poetry. Top-notch sound and informed, easily readable liner notes complete an irresistible, essential package for all vocal music fans. Bravo!" -Classics Today (10/10)

'It feels inadequate just to describe this enchanting new collection from Gerald Finley and Julius Drake as the best modern recital devoted to the wonderfully varied world of Ravel's songs ... Julius Drake's warm-toned playing is, as ever, a perfect foil, all captured in Hyperion's wonderful sound. Riches indeed' (BBC Music Magazine)

'Ravel's sense of colour and atmosphere is infallible ... Finley's mellifluous, malleable baritone is an ideal match for this repertoire, with lines eloquently floated, nuances subtly voiced and character sensitively defined. This is a beguiling programme, beautifully performed' (Gramophone)

'These are songs that deserve to be better known ... There are wonderful settings of prose poems by Jules Renard in which the peacock parades, a swan glides across glittering water and a kingfisher perches on a fisherman's rod. Drake relishes Ravel's iridescent piano parts, shifting imperceptibly from picture-painting to psychological comment ... [Don Quixote] Magnificently performed by Finley and Drake, these grand mélodies ... are a compelling miniature drama in three acts ... Finley matches Drake song for song, the naïve knight, the ardent lover and, in 'Chanson épique', a grave and gravelly voice for this most principled of heroes ... Every track on this fine CD is proof that Ravel ... was a composer who rose to a given musical occasion with consummate artistry, conviction and originality' (International Record Review)

'It's a beautiful disc that startles in ways you don't always expect ... The poetic restraint of Finley's singing and Drake's playing are spellbinding. The settings of Marot and Ronsard are ravishingly done, and the mixture of irony and sadness they bring to Histoires Naturelles is exceptional' (The Guardian)

'These are for the most part works of cool restraint, with passion hidden beneath a jewelled surface, and Finley's wonderfully flexible voice achieves maximum effect with minimal means ... Drake's playing is a marvel of delicacy and almost gamelan-like sonorities' (The Daily Telegraph)

' Gerald Finley seems to have found his métier here, singing with an enlightened sense of vocal agility and also fidelity to the textual nuances of Ravel's music. This is one of the best Ravel recitals I have heard in a long time (and they don't come often so if this composer and his songs have any meaning for you at all), grab this disc quick. Julius Drake adds his normally sensitive partnership in music that is truly written for two' (Audiophile Audition, USA)

'Gerald Finley dares to tackle and all-Ravel program, and it only takes a few selections to recognize his mastery... The Key here is the Canadian's entirely natural approach, free of affectation or overinterpretation and supported by a voice of consistent beauty, warmth and flexibility... What emerges is not just a great display of vocal artistry, style, diction and characterization' (Opera News)

Gramophone Classical Music Guide
There is a vast gulf between the bibulous bravado of the 'Chanson à boire' that Ravel included in his Don Quichotte à Dulcinée songs and the bleak, dark despair of his Verlaine setting Un Grand sommeil noir. Placing them next to one another in this fine selection of over two dozen songs emphasises the broad expressive range that Ravel was able to embrace. It also throws into focus the way that Gerald Finley and Julius Drake can so evocatively tap their emotional substance. These exquisitely crafted miniatures, whether in the folk-inspired Chants populaires and Cinqmélodies populaires grecques or in the tender Noëlsdes jouets to a text of Ravel's own, show his creative fastidiousness in a consistently positive light: the mood might be robust or rarefied, but Ravel's sense of colour and atmosphere is infallible.

The imagery of the Histoires naturelles, for example, testifies to Ravel's intuitive response to poetry and to his precise placing of the tonal brushstrokes. In this respect, the piano is an essential collaborator, etching in the background for the gliding grace of the swan or the chirping of the cricket.

Drake draws the ear ineluctably into Ravel's imaginative world, as he does elsewhere in the cool restraint of Ronsard à son âme or the turbulence and shifting currents of Les Grands Ventsvenus d'outremer. Finley's mellifluous, malleable baritone is similarly an ideal match for this repertoire, with lines eloquently floated, nuances subtly voiced and character sensitively defined. This is a beguiling programme, beautifully performed.



Reviews

There are currently no reviews, be the first one!
Login or Create an Account to write a review
 

Also Purchased

Works Details

>Ravel, Maurice : Histoires naturelles
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 18 min. 42 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1906

>Ravel, Maurice : Ronsard à son âme
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 52 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1923-1924

>Ravel, Maurice : Don Quichotte à Dulcinée
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1932-1933

>Ravel, Maurice : Un grand sommeil noir
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 51 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1895

>Ravel, Maurice : Les grands vents venus d'outre-mer
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 11 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1906

>Ravel, Maurice : Sur l'herbe
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1907

>Ravel, Maurice : Chants populaires :: Chanson française
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 2 min. 10 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1910

>Ravel, Maurice : Chants populaires :: Chanson italienne
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 1 min. 28 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1910

>Ravel, Maurice : Chants populaires :: Chanson hébraïque
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 5 min. 8 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1910

>Ravel, Maurice : Chants populaires :: Chanson écossaise
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 23 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1910

>Ravel, Maurice : Noël des jouets
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 3 min. 20 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1905

>Ravel, Maurice : Épigrammes (2) de Clément Marot
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 4 min. 5 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1899

>Ravel, Maurice : Mélodies populaires grecques (5)
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 7 min. 17 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Written: 1904-1906

>Ravel, Maurice : Mélodies hébraïques (2)
  • Performers: Julius Drake (Piano); Gerald Finley
  • Notes: All Saints, Durham Road, East Finchley, London, England (07/11/2008-07/13/2008)
  • Running Time: 6 min. 15 sec.
  • Period Time: Modern
  • Form: Vocal
  • Written: 1914