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Daniel Taylor: Portrait
J.S. Bach, Suzie Le Blanc, Ensemble Da Sonar
Daniel Taylor: Portrait
Genres: Special Interest, Pop, Classical
 
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #1

There's been a good deal of fanfare heralding the re-emergence of a vocal species once considered endangered--namely, the countertenor. This portrait recital of one creamy-voiced exponent, Daniel Taylor, comprises the ...  more »

     
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Amazon.com
There's been a good deal of fanfare heralding the re-emergence of a vocal species once considered endangered--namely, the countertenor. This portrait recital of one creamy-voiced exponent, Daniel Taylor, comprises the highlights of four previous recordings and shows to great advantage the various aspects of his remarkable voice. Bravely, Taylor begins the album with one of the greater challenges in the countertenor repertoire, "Erbarme dich," from Bach's St. Matthew Passion. His bravery pays off: this is a beautifully modulated account of a suffering soul crying out for comfort. He can hit a note with icy purity and warm it through with a careful vibrato, never letting the effect seem like a trick. His voice is not as full-on luscious as that of David Daniels, nor quite as melting as that of Andreas Scholl, but Taylor does have an intelligent approach to the drama of the music and a warm precision all his own. The Purcell selection (from On the Muse's Isle) and the Dowland songs (from Tears of the Muse) are exquisite; Taylor's delicately breathless account of "Come againe" only makes this naughty song all the more teasing. There is one disappointment--"Saget, saget" from Bach's Easter Oratorio--which is rushed and careless. But it's a blip on an otherwise beautiful album. --Warwick Thompson
 

CD Reviews

A must-have CD for an outstanding price
Veggiechiliqueen | 08/04/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)

"I first read about Daniel Taylor on the SchollSociety messageboards and Amazon.com and I was intrigued. A Canadian countertenor with a voice comparable to Andreas Scholl's? ...I couldn't resist. I took it along on a three-hour bus ride to Tadoussac, Québec.

As the mournful opening strains of Erbarme Dich commenced, the haunting, sweeping violins and viol carried me along the winding roads through the mountains. The sky was overcast, and as I heard Taylor's voice for the first time the sun came out. I was in Heaven; beautiful vistas of mountains on one side, jagged cliffs plunging into the St. Laurent on the other and Daniel Taylor's voice in my ears. Erbarme Dich is deep, passionate, and so achingly beautiful. I am an avid lover of Bach but it was the first time I had heard anything from St. Matthew's Passion. I was more familiar with many of the other Dowland songs: Time Stands Still, Come Again, Flow My Tears, and I Saw My Lady Weep, all of which are present on Andreas Scholl's "English Folksongs and Lute Songs."

Daniel Taylor's voice is exquisite. Haunting. Ethereal. A creamy, lush, pure sound, more feminine than Scholl's tone, reminiscent of brilliant Japanese countertenor Yoshikazu Mera. As with Scholl, the effect sounds effortless and angelic. "Daniel Taylor: Portrait" is an excellent introduction to an amazing talent. Ten stars."
Impeccable singing - stylistically and technically
Emiko Bellocq | Paris, France | 07/19/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Although I mostly agree with the above reviewers, I do have a different opinion about Easter Oratorio, BWV 249/8. The speed of this aria may be on the fast side, but Dan is neither careless nor too rush. One should have a close look at the text itself as this is NOT a rhetorical dacapo aria from the Baroque opera. The text starts with the following phrase: "Saget, saget mir geschwinde" (Tell, tell me quickly). Then it continue to ask where one can find Jesus and declare his/her desire to be embraced by Him. It is appropriate to be in a slight haste to convey the urgent nature of the ardent desire. As for "full-on luscious" nonsense, all I can say is Baroque repertoire is NOT a Wagnerian opera. Highly romanticized singing style has no place here. The phrasing, diction, voice colour (Stimmfaerbungand), and vibrato should be carefully chosen so that one can clearly communicate the composers' intention and message. If one wants to adhere to the musicological correctness, there should not be much vibrato for music before ~1800.There is no week point in this sampler CD. It is impeccable all way through - stylistically and technically. If one wants to proceed from here, Dan's complete discography is available on the net. Just run a search with a keyword "daniel+taylor+discography" with Google."