Various: American Choral Music (Alena Gorina/ Dwight Bigler/ James Morrow/ University of Texas Chamber Singers) (Naxos: 8.559358)
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American choral music has many faces and, while aware of tradition, often looks resolutely towards the future. Vincent Persichetti's Mass envelops an original cantus firmus in a shimmering silken garment of ever-shifting harmonies, while Lukas Foss provides a lyre-like accompaniment for his lean, sometimes athletic, settings of three Psalms. Irving Fine sets poems by Shakespeare's contemporary Ben Jonson (The Hour-Glass), William Schuman draws on texts by Walt Whitman for his Carols of Death, while William Bolcom uses African- American poems as the basis for a wide-ranging song cycle, The Mask.
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