Most Grand to Die


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Most Grand to Die



Catalogue No:




Release date:

30th July 2012




78 minutes


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Most Grand to Die

Butterworth, G:

Bredon Hill and other songs

A Shropshire Lad - six songs


In Flanders

Severn Meadows

Even such is time (Sir Walter Raleigh)

By a bierside

The twa corbies


Vaughan Williams:

Songs of Travel

James Rutherford (baritone) & Eugene Asti (piano)



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James Rutherford, with Eugene Asti at the piano, here records his first disc for BIS, presenting a programme of works from composers all influenced greatly by the First World War.

George Butterworth’s A Shropshire Lad takes texts from A.E. Housman’s poems of young men facing death.

Vaughan Williams turned to poems by Robert Louis Stevenson, for his Songs of Travel, a set of nine songs in which the wanderer-narrator philosophically accepts the mixture of joys and sorrows offered to him along the road.

Gurney – the youngest of the three composers – was also a poet, and in Severn Meadows expressed his longing for home in both text and music. Severn Meadows was composed during Gurney’s time in the trenches.

George Butterworth: Bredon Hill and Other Songs

No. 1. Bredon Hill

No. 2. O Fair enough are Sky and Plain

No. 3. When the Lad for the Longing Sighs

No. 4. On the Idle Hill of Summer

No. 5. With Rue My Heart is Laden

Ivor Gurney: In Flanders

In Flanders

Ivor Gurney: Severn Meadows

Severn Meadows

Ivor Gurney: Even Such Is Time

Even Such Is Time

Ivor Gurney: By a Bierside

By a Bierside

George Butterworth: 6 Songs from A Shropshire Lad

No. 1. Loveliest of Trees

No. 2. When I was one-and-twenty

No. 3. Look Not in My Eyes

No. 4. Think no more, Lad

No. 5. The Lads in their Hundreds

No. 6. Is My Team Ploughing?

Ivor Gurney: The Twa Corbies

The Twa Corbies

Ralph Vaughan Williams: Songs of Travel

No. 1. The Vagabond

No. 2. Let Beauty Awake

No. 3. The Roadside Fire

No. 4. Youth and Love

No. 5. In Dreams

No. 6. The Infinite Shining Heavens

No. 7. Whither Must I Wander?

No. 8. Bright Is the Ring of Words

No. 9. I Have Trod the Upward and Downward Slope

Ivor Gurney: 5 Elizabethan Songs (text by J. Fletcher)

5 Elizabethan Songs: No. 4. Sleep

The Guardian

15th August 2012


“The quality of the Gurney songs may be a bit uneven, but Rutherford handles them all with great tact, his tone fined down, his diction immaculate, and without a hint of extraneous pathos. In the authentically great Butterworth sets Rutherford's approach is exemplary.”

International Record Review

September 2012

“Rutherford's full tone, dark, possibly bass-baritone rather than BIS's designation of baritone, is released with the vigour to resemble somebody, here the vagabond, striding purposefully along the lane...Asti's playing gels with Rutherford's singing in these Gurney songs, as it does in the other pieces...Rutherford's enunciation is all one could wish for.”

BBC Music Magazine

December 2012


“A hefty bass-baritone in every sense, he's inevitably compared with Bryn Terfel, but his voice seems darker and somewhat smoother, less given to pianissimi but still expressive...Songs of Travel has a notably virile energy, reinforced by veteran accompanist Eugene Asti's unusually driven reading...A very worthwhile recital.”

Gramophone Magazine

November 2012

“Rutherford brings his Wagnerian bass-baritone to bear on the song repertoire with uncommon skill and sensitivity...The only serious drawback comes at the top of the voice, where Wagnerian bluster and a slow vibrato sometimes detract from the beauty of his singing...but Rutherford has given notice of a very appreciable talent for song. With accompaniments of exemplary precision, this disc is highly recommended.”

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