The Irish Times on Heavenly Harmonies
Michael Dervan, The Irish Times (7 March, 2008)
The members of the young British vocal ensemble Stile Antico have taken a high-contrast approach to programming their CD of “heavenly harmonies”.
They alternate works by Thomas Tallis (nine short, straightforward, English psalm tunes for Archbishop Parker’s Psalter, the third of which inspired Vaughan Williams’s Tallis Fantasia) and William Byrd (a selection of polyphonically elaborate, Latin motets written for recusant Catholic use). The performances, given without a conductor, are splendid – pure, solid, at times astonishingly full for a group that runs to barely more than a dozen voices. This is a spellbinding disc.