Sunday 12 January 1997
Ockeghem: Masses `Au Travail Suis' & `De Plus En Plus'. Tallis Scholars/Peter Phillips (Gimell, CD only). The 500th anniversary of the death of Johannes Ockeghem is in February; though if anyone notices it amongst the anniversary celebrations for Schubert and Brahms that get under way at around the same time, I'll eat my metronome. Mid-15th-century Flemish polyphonists of modest output don't excite that much interest outside academia. But Ockeghem's small, exquisite oeuvre is original enough to rank him among the most fascinating creative minds of his time; and this recording of two lesser-known masses with the popular songs on which they're based is a timely introduction to his con- voluted brilliance. Beautifully sung, finely balanced, captured in a resonant but clean acoustic, this is a cappella choral singing at its best, and an entirely recommendable addition to the Renaissance treasure-trove already amassed by Peter Phillips. Michael White
Nate Dogg: G-Funk Classics, Vol 1 (MCA, CD/LP/tape). Ever since his nicely judged vocal contribution elevated Warren G's "Regulate" to the estate of global monsterhood, the album debut of serenader Nate Dogg has been awaited with keen interest. But this sumptuous coagulation of inflatable beats and honeyed vocal lines surpasses all expectation. Along with the world-conquering Fugees and the stunningly intricate Bone Thugs & Harmony, Nate Dogg seems to be leading the way to a new R'n'B era of unabashed musicality. On the beguilingly old-fashioned "Scared of Love" and the irresistible-despite-being-Snoop-Doggy-Dogg-accompanied "Never Leave Me Alone", he proclaims the age of the virtual barber-shop. Ben Thompson
Betty Carter: I'm Yours, You're Mine (Verve, CD only). It's difficult to imagine that at 66, and after a career of continual brilliance, the vocalist supreme could actually get any better, but here's the evidence. On a swoonable set of ballads, Carter sings less but makes it mean more, her sighing, dying fall of a voice (now deepened almost to tenor-sax register) flutters around the melodies briefly before leaving the superb band to get on with it. The title track in particular - a wordless scat over a pattern that sounds derived from Bach - is extraordinarily moving.
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Snoop Dogg and Jared Leto buy a stake in Reddit as A-list invests $50m
- 2 Prince held a Facebook Q&A and this is the only question he answered...
- 3 'F*ck it, I quit': KTVA reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 4 35,000 walrus gather on north-west Alaska beach 'for a rest'
- 5 A teacher speaks out: 'I'm effectively being forced out of a career that I wanted to love'
Thrill of the chaste: The truth about Gandhi's sex life
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'
'Offensive' Banksy immigration mural in Clacton is scrubbed from wall by council
Exclusive: 'Putin's Russia has been my biggest regret,' says Nato's outgoing Secretary General
The Osborne Ultimatum: Chancellor’s benefits freeze bombshell will affect ten million households
There’s no excuse for Dave Lee Travis’s behaviour, but we need to keep a sense of proportion
Mark Reckless becomes second Tory MP to defect to Ukip in a month
Should gay sex be illegal? 16% of Britons think so
Former Tory donor Arron Banks ups his Ukip donation to £1million following William Hague 'nobody' comment
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