Countertenor Andreas Scholl's new CD is devoted to little-known, late-17th- and early-18th-century cantatas whose subject matter is Arcadia, a real region in Greece, but more frequently evoked as an idyllic place filled with innocent, simple shepherds and shepherdesses. Scholl employs a more operatic tone and attitude than we're accustomed to from countertenors. Not only does he use vibrato and "lean" on the voice, but he dips down, as in the final moments of a cantata by Marcello, into a deep, dark baritone range. The effect is dramatic and apt. Elsewhere his tone is just gorgeous and always expressive, he pays attention to the text of these works and captures the theatrical moment in each. The last movement of a work by Francesco Gasparini is excitingly acrobatic. The Accademia Byzantina is a remarkable "backup" group and they get to play some purely orchestral works as well. This disc is a knockout; enjoy it.–Robert Levine
ARCADIA So Red The Rose (2010 issue UK Collectors Edition 3-disc set - Just after Duran Duran's popularity peaked in late 1984 and early 1985, Arcadia formed, comprising of three Duran Duran members: Simon LeBon, Nick Rhodes & Roger Taylor. Originally released in December 1985, All Music Guide describes 'So Red The Rose' as 'the best album Duran never made', and features contributions by a plethora of acclaimed artists such as David Gilmour, Sting[backing vocalist on 'The Promise'], Herbie Hancock & Grace Jones [whose spoken word can be heard on 'The Flame' & 'Election Day'].
Big, luscious Symphonic Scores to grace any movie screen with a variety of enduring themes such as War & Peace, Nostalgia & Romance, Sentimental Moments and Glamorous Illusions, some tracks of which feature a moody variety of mixed choirs.