HUGH WOOD (b.1932): Laurie Lee Songs (Clare McCaldin [mezzo], Iain Burnside [piano]), DH Lawrence Songs, Wild Cyclamen (James Gilchrist [tenor], Simon Lepper [piano]), The Isles of Greece (Roderick Williams [baritone], Burnside [piano]).
Catalogue Number: 07R051
Description: Songs have always been an important part of Wood's output, stemming from an early and enduring love of poetry. Robert Graves is a long-time favourite, and Wild Cyclamen is a cycle constructed by the composer from twelve short poems. The early Laurie Lee Songs are the most straightforwardly diatonic, but Wood has never abandoned tonality, and the vocal lines are always lyrically satisfying, even as the accompaniments become more contrapuntally intricate and incorporate a greater degree of dissonance. Whether celebrating the fierce heat and light of Greece with Lawrence Durrell or revelling in the lush imagery of DH Lawrence, Wood's settings have a sensuousness and warmth that matches the lyricism of the poetical imagery. Texts included.