Album: Purcell, Cease, Anxious World – La Rêveuse (Mirare)

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The faintest of French inflections on soprano Julie Hassler's Ts and Ds are tiny blemishes on this otherwise flawless recital of Purcell's songs and chamber music.

Hassler's pure tone, delicate decorations, easy phrasing and profound connection to the poetry are complemented by La Rêveuse's ensemble of violins, triple harp, organ, harpsichord and theorbo. Chaconnes and passacaglias wind through the programme, presented first as keyboard solos, reappearing as songs and, then leading seamlessly into the music for strings. The impression is of a world in which joy slides into sadness, sadness into joy.

Pick of the Album: A slow, beautifully controlled reading of 'O let me weep'

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