Steve Davislim (tenor)
The Queensland Orchestra
Guillaume Tourniaire (conductor)
Melba MR 301123
reviewed by Neville Cohn
Vierne: Les Djinns; Eros; Ballade de desespere; Psyche
Chausson: Poeme de l’amour et de la mer
More often than not, compact discs bearing the Melba label remind me of books published by the Folio Society. The latter, as is well known to innumerable booklovers around the world, sets immense store by the quality of its publications.
As its many members know, Folio books are a joy to look at and a tactile delight. Much time and thought are devoted to choice of type font. Illustrations are often specially commissioned, bindings are invariably first rate. As well, each book comes in a finely made slipcase. In decades of membership, I have never encountered a volume that disappointed.
All this invariably comes to mind when listening to compact discs issued by Melba. As with Folio, every aspect of a Melba label compact disc production receives the most careful attention.
Liner notes, often lengthy and detailed, are invariably of high standard as are illustrations in the liner note booklets which are finely bound. There is, as well, a transparent slipcase.
But, as some might ask, what is the point of all this fine packaging if the recorded contents are less than completely satisfying. Happily, Melba label CDs are everything one could have hoped for. And Turbulent Heart meets the highest expectations. The performances are stylistically impeccable, every note clothed in tone of the most appealing kind. This recording is just about the last word in excellence. I have returned to it again and again.
I would be surprised if this CD fails to win over an enthusiastic constituency. It is a marvellous presentation of music seldom heard. Stylistically impeccable, its presentation is a triumph. I recommend it unreservedly.