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Kim André Arnesen is best known for the Cradle Hymn, included here, which was performed in front of Barack Obama at the White House in 2016. Many of the other pieces includes are first recordings. Arnesen has a particular affinity with the soprano voice, and Child of Song, The Gift I’ll Leave You, Dormi, Jesu and Making or Breaking are all conceived to highlight that range, in the final case with the addition of a soprano saxophone that adds an ECM-ish tinge to the piece. Most pieces are relatively short and there is a slightly mechanical pace to the programme, which never again quite reaches the heights of the opening Even When He Is Silent, setting of a graffito from a concentration camp wall. That has echoes of something else, too, and one feels with Arnesen that a lot of work is conceived ‘in the style – or shadow – of…’ Beautiful music, though, and expertly sung.

BRIAN MORTON Read the full review on Agora Classica


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