At The Sign of The Angel
The new recording from
THE DONCASTER WAITES
Doncaster’s performers of renaissance music.
The Waites first recording aims to re create music as it may have been heard and performed by the people of Doncaster in the 16th and 17th centuries.
Includes songs from the ale house, stately dances from the homes of the rich and the lively music of the streets.
All performed on reproductions of original instruments such as shawms, crumhorns and hurdy-gurdy. Over 60 minutes of music.
Price £8.00 plus £1.50 p&p from [email protected]
2 Ledbury Gardens
Telephone: 01302 788428
AT THE SIGN OF THE ANGEL
Cast your mind back to the summer of 1967 (if you are old enough) sometimes referred to as “The Summer of Love”. One of the most significant events to take place in this country was the release of the Beatles’ “Sergeant Pepper” album. This made a big impact at the time, one of the reasons being that there was such a wide variety of styles, instrumental combinations and musical textures represented within it. My own impression at the time was that it was more like an aural variety show! On first playing, this was exactly the same impression I gained from the CD in question.
The first track is an ideal start with a wonderful ‘Noise of Shawms’. I particularly like the device of shifting the pitch upwards with the top voice being a sopranino and the bottom a tenor. There are two reasons for this: in the open air, this brighter sound will carry better and a tenor instrument on the bottom line is less ‘grumbly’. Then follows a track for ‘indoor’ instruments. This is an imaginative arrangement with some truly delicious textures. As a Recorder player, I particularly like track three and the fact that the top line is on a Treble, not a Descant. Again a favourite device of mine. Next come Voices with Cittern and a Tenor Recorder. More fabulous sounds! Then Pipes and Tabors with additional Percussion. I could go on like this about the whole album but you get the picture? Each track is sheer musical delight.
The Doncaster Waites play a wide variety of instruments between them and their musical arrangements present these in so many different imaginative ways and don’t forget they all sing!
You must buy this CD now, for all sorts of reasons; the wide variety of musical sounds and textures, the quality of the performances and the sheer versatility of the personnel are a good three starters! I find it impressive that only six people can have such a wide range of musical abilities at such a high standard.
All Waits and would-be Waits should listen to this to give them something to aspire to.
The Bar is raised, the Gauntlet, thrown down.
This will be a difficult act to follow!
Tony Pearson, The Ely Piper
15 Sept 2009