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SIBELIUS: Songs, Vol. 2

Composer(s):Sibelius, Jean
Artist(s) Somero, Jouni, piano • Jurmu, Hannu, tenor
Period(s) 20th Century
Genre Classical Music
Category Vocal
Catalogue 8.570020
Label Naxos
Quality   320kbps
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Although Sibelius wrote around a hundred songs over a period of more than thirty years – mainly settings of Swedish texts, with eight in German and only a handful in Finnish – they have suffered comparative neglect alongside his larger-scale orchestral and choral music. The best of the songs are essentially nature pieces, dark-hued, vividly characterized, intensely melancholic and vocally demanding. Sibelius considered them to represent his “innermost self”. Volume One of this two-disc survey is available on Naxos 8.570019.


Review By David Denton,Naxos,June 2007

We have come to the second volume of Sibelius's songs in this Naxos series, a largely forgotten part of his repertoire on the international stage, though he composed more than a hundred works in the genre. As Naxos appear intent on recording them all, there will be some first performances on disc, including three here. Most of the songs are to Swedish texts, the language the composer spoke from birth, though they are here performed by Finnish artists. Opening with the Finlandia Hymni, which uses the melody form the famous orchestral work, sets the scene for heroic declamation that is to occupy most of the release. There is, however, one charming moment with Koulute (The Road to School) originally intended for children's voices. As I



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