To Drive the Cold Winter Away
A fireside presentation of music for merrymaking down the ages. “This disc is an outright winner.” Michael Greenhalgh – Records and Recordings.
The instruments featured on the recording were all researched and constructed by the group’s director, John Sothcott and Francis Grubb, who wrote the booklet note and plays the recorder, gittern, rebec, medieval fiddle and percussion on the disc. We also have Ray Attfield as voice, percussion and bells, John Grubb on citole, gittern, lute and percussion, Derek Harrison is the counter-tenor and plays rebec, Rosemary Harrison and Mary Sothcott are the sopranos, John Lawes plays recorders, crumhorn and percussion, Michael Oxenham is on the cornette, recorders, pipe and tabor, crumhorn, curtal and percussion, John White also plays the rebec, Leila Ward plays recorders, crumhorn and shawm, while John Sothcott performs on recorders, rauschpfeife, citole, rebecs and vielles as well as directing.
“… the music is rousing and enjoyable ... The performances themselves are good – rough and ready, but then, rough and ready is the style of the music and the nature of the instruments. The music itself is drawn from various dances, songs and carols that have come down to us from the twelfth to seventeenth centuries, as well as some melodies from Playford’s The English Dancing Master, the odd bit of a Dowland, and dances from Praetorius’s Terpsichore. These tunes and dances the group weave into different sections, as imagined that they might have been played for example at the tavern, at the manor, or at the King’s court. It’s not a disc to sit down and listen through to in attentive silence, but it makes for pleasant listening whilst writing the Christmas cards, or doing something else festive and undemanding.” Em Marshall-Luck, MusicWeb-International