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“So harmonious is their mutual musical vision that it is hard to believe there are really six individual players at work here.” BBC Music Magazine
"Phantasm play with the kind of sympathetic interplay that you'd expect from a crack string quartet.” Gramophone
Phantasm’s bold and passionate style of consort playing does full justice to John Ward’s Consort music for five and six viols, recorded here complete for the very first time. Recorded in the warm acoustic of Wadham College Chapel, Oxford this recording reveals works that seduce the listener with lyrical melodies and music of great charm.
Phantasm’s rare ability to produce such a richly expressive unified sound allows the subtlety and elegance in Ward’s music to be fully realised.
John Ward (1571 - 1638) was a noted madrigalist and contemporary of Gibbons. His viol music is of further interest due to an abundance of historical references to Pavans, Italian ‘madrigalisms’ and plainsong (the latter demonstrated in Ward’s three examples of the In Nomine).
Phantasm, founded in 1994, catapulted into international prominence when its debut CD won a Gramophone Award for the Best Baroque Instrumental Recording of 1997.
Since then, Phantasm has released ten further recordings, won several awards, and become recognised as the most exciting viol consort active on the world scene today.
Critics have called their performances and recordings: 'intoxicating', 'revelatory', 'electrifying', 'interpretations pervaded by a truly burning spirit'.
In their debut recording for Linn Records, acclaimed viol consort Phantasm showcase their dazzling sonority with a charming programme of music deserving of re-discovery.
Fantasia No 1 a6 (VdGS 1)
Fantasia No 3 a6 (VdGS 3)
Fantasia No 6 a6 (VdGS 6)
Fantasia No 2 a6 (VdGS 2)
Fantasia No 4 a6 (VdGS 4)
Fantasia No 5 a6 (VdGS 5)
Fantasia No 7 a6 (VdGS 7)
In Nomine No 1 a6 (VdGS 1)
Fantasia No 1 a5 (VdGS 1)
Fantasia No 2 a5 La Rondinella (VdGS 2)
Fantasia No 3 a5 (VdGS 3)
Fantasia No 4 a5 (VdGS 4)
Fantasia No 5 a5 (VdGS 5)
Fantasia No 6 a5 (VdGS 6)
Fantasia No 7 a5 (VdGS 7)
Fantasia No 8 a5 (VdGS 8)
Fantasia No 9 a5 (VdGS 9)
Fantasia No 10 a5 (VdGS 10)
Fantasia No 11 a5 Cor Mio (VdGS 12)
Fantasia No 13 a5 Non Fu Senze (VdGS 14)
Fantasia No 12 a5 Leggiadra Sei (VdGS 13)
In Nomine a5 (VdGS 14)
In Nomine No 2 a6 (VdGS 2)
“Phantasm's playing is impeccable, alternately exposing motifs and coalescing in sonorities all the richer for being so perfectly in tune. Their performance is supported by surround-sound recording, re-creating the warm acoustic of an Oxford Chapel. Tudor viol music seldom sounds better than this.”
“As an ensemble, the members of Phantasm perform with authority and exceptional musical awareness. They achieve a remarkable blend of instrumental timbres and breathe as one with their bows. The results on this disc are stunning; but, equally the recording successfully captures individual voices, so much so that the listener feels almost part of the ensemble.”
6th September 2009
“In the warmly resonant playing of Phantasm they emerge, as director Laurence Dreyfus characterises them, as madrigals which revel in harmonic shifts, interrupted cadences and delayed resolutions. The richly sustained performances - have you ever heard so much vibrato from a viol consort? - make a fine case for a neglected composer”