Album: Faryl, Wonderland (Decca)

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The Independent Culture

For her second album, the young mezzo-soprano has tried to develop an overall theme, loosely based around Alice In Wonderland, though listeners may struggle to discern a trace of it.

As before, she and producer Jon Cohen have sweetened the classical elements, adding a glutinous lyric to "Winter" from The Four Seasons for a "Wonderland" heavy on oboe and glockenspiel, cooing prettily through the modern light-classical landmark "Adiemus", and essaying impressive multi-tracked descant and harmonies on Offenbach's "Barcarolle". Elsewhere, Sakamoto's "Merry Christmas, Mr Lawrence" is gently captivating, and Uilleann pipes bring an earthy poignancy to "Blow The Wind Southerly"; but on "Close To You" and other tracks, the lack of emotional weight is telling.

Download this Barcarolle; Merry Christmas, Mr Lawrence; Adiemus; Blow The Wind Southerly