John Tavener — Eternity's Sunrise
(Harmonia Mundi HMU 907231, 1999, CD)
by Dean Suzuki, Published 1999-11-01
The British composer John Tavener has struck a chord with a significant cross-over audience. Like Arvo Pärt, Tavener creates a sumptuously gorgeous music infused with his belief in God and a desire to create music which honors and glorifies Him. And this is glorious music; indeed the composer admits to finding this his most beautiful release yet. As does Pärt, Tavener works with an overtly tonal (or modal) language, but he is no neo-romantic. Rather, his style, both musically and performance-wise, derives much from the Renaissance. In fact, this music was commissioned and performed by the Academy of Ancient Music Orchestra and Choir for their 25th anniversary. Invoking the British tradition of the High Renaissance, including composers such as Thomas Tallis and John Taverner (note the difference in spelling, though it is thought that they are distant relatives), composers whose sweet and resplendent music falls in the same category as that of Palestrina, Tavener uses modernisms and departs from the Renaissance style as he sees fit. Thus, there is a timeless and reverent quality about his music that appeals to a broad audience without pandering to it. The crystalline, pristine performance by the Academy of Ancient Music, the pure and exacting singing, sans vibrato, by soloists Patricia Rozario, Julia Gooding, George Mosley and Andrew Manze are simply magnificent. Stunning.
Related artist(s): John Tavener
Ennio Morricone RIP – Famed composer Ennio Morricone has died at the age of 91. The creator of scores for more than 500 movies, some of his works have become the most recognizable sounds in the history of cinema. His soundtracks for Sergio Leone's Westerns made from 1964 to 1971, are iconic landmarks in film music, but he also composed for dramas, comedies, and other genres. He won the Academy Award for Best Original Score in 2016 for The Hateful Eight. » Read more
Keith Tippett RIP – One of the giants of British jazz has left us. Keith Graham Tippetts, known professionally as Keith Tippett, died today at the age of 72. His work from the late 60s into the 70s and beyond includes some of the greatest jazz produced in the UK, and stands as an impressive oevre to this day. » Read more
Phil May of The Pretty Things RIP – We were saddened to learn that Phil May, lead singer and founding member of The Pretty Things, has died at the age of 75. The band's 1968 album S.F. Sorrow is one of the enduring classics of the psychedelic era, and the group existed in various forms until finally retiring in 2018. » Read more