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This delightful recording serves as a good reminder that London was not the only musically happening place in the 18th century. While Handel and J. C. Bach were beavering away in the capital, their Birmingham contemporaries including Joseph Harris, John Pixell, Richard Mudge and Jeremiah Clarke (not the famous one), although not destined to become household names, were producing quantities of charming, high-quality music. Basing its title on Pixell’s Op 2 publication (Birmingham, 1775), this disc offers a pleasing mix of vocal and instrumental gems from these composers. Martin Perkins’ Musical & Amicable Society gives sympathetic and stylish performances. Louise Wayman’s pure, warm soprano voice is ideally suited to the often pastoral-themed music, while Rachel Latham’s soft, expressive flute provides a perfect partner in Gunn’s `jocular song’, ‘An Occasional Ballad’.

Katharine May Read the full review on Agora Classica

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Early Music Today, 2014 - ©Rhinegold Publishing