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Somewhere between ethnomusicology, ‘world music’ and the French concept of folklore imaginaire lies this record. The music on it comes from all over the place – ‘My Luve is Like a Red, Red Rose’, ‘Danny Boy’, Sami folk songs, Sara Teasdale’s ‘There Will Come Soft Rains’ – but Ešenvalds makes it cohere beautifully. In structure and tone, it is somewhat similar to Luciano Berio’s Folk Songs. The composer ensures that the ‘folk’ elements aren’t too quaint and Maris Sirmais delivers a strong and flexible line which the singers follow with almost improvisational ease. A beautifully conceived programme, performed with relaxed grace.

BRIAN MORTON Read the full review on Agora Classica

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