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This remarkable disc of pieces by composers from the Pacific Rim is beautifully performed by the voices of Ars Nova Copenhagen under their inspirational director Paul Hillier. The earliest work here is Anne Boyd’s As I Crossed a Bridge of Dreams (1975), a mesmerising evocation of medieval Japan in material inspired by gagaku and the sho, a Japanese mouth organ (the same instrument influenced Britten in his church parables). Lou Harrison’s 1983 Mass for Saint Cecilia’s Day combines the style of plainchant with gamelan scales and Chinese traditional music in an engaging manner, and the disc is completed by three short works by Ross Edwards, Jack Body and Liu Sola (the last with Kevin Crossley-Holland’s spoken translation of an Anglo-Saxon poem). The programme makes a satisfying artistic journey round the Pacific circle, with a recording of demonstration quality. If you’re looking for something a bit different, this disc can be warmly recommended.

PHILIP REED Read the full review on Agora Classica

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