Album: Gallicantus, Dialogues Of Sorrow (Signum Classics)

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The Independent Culture

When James I's son Prince Henry died aged 18 in 1612, from infection picked up during an ill-advised swim in the Thames, the outpouring of grief was fulsome.

The vocal ensemble Gallicantus has compiled a selection of the mourning songs written for Henry by the likes of Robert Ramsey and Richard Dering, in which the poetic imagery (eg, Ramsey's "What tears, dear Prince, can serve to water all/ The plants of woe, grown in thy funeral?") is exquisitely rendered with clarity and poise, either a cappella or with just lute accompaniment. There is a fine balance of high and low registers, while the individual singers' solos are marked by calm sincerity.

DOWNLOAD THIS What Tears, Dear Prince?; O Jonathan, Woe Is Me; Weep, Weep Britons; When Pale Famine