Dowland: The Art of Melancholy (CD)

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Iestyn Davies

Of all English songwriters, John Dowland has enjoyed the most powerful afterlife, his voice unmistakably present in any version of his songs. The preeminent marriage of music and poetry, the nuanced shades of wit and melancholy and the extraordinary writing for both lute and voice all combine to proclaim Dowland as the father of English song.


Countertenor Iestyn Davies has gained international fame through his operatic performances (including lead roles at the Metropolitan Opera of New York and English National Opera) and recordings (including his Gramophone-Award-winning recording of Arias for Guadagni). Hearing him in this intimate musical setting is a revelation—as is the playing of the young lutenist Thomas Dunford.


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Sorrow, stay


Come again, sweet love doth now invite


Go Crystal tears


Mrs Winter's Jump


I saw my Lady weepe


Flow my teares (Lacrimæ)


Can she excuse my wrongs? (First Booke of Songes, 1597)


Behold a wonder here


Semper Dowland Semper Dolens


In darkness let me dwell


Time stands still


All ye, whom Love or Fortune hath betray'd


Say love if ever thou didst find


Lachrimae, or Seaven Teares


Come away, come, sweet love


Shall I strive with wordes to move?


Burst forth my tears


Fortune my foe


Come heavy sleep


Now, O now, I needs must part


Frog Galliard


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BBC Music Magazine

May 2014


“Sophistication and refinement inform every note of Iestyn Davies's recital...this recording proves that the age of monochrome Dowland is over.”