New York Polyphony Garners GRAMMY Nomination for 'Times go by Turns'
New York Polyphony, the acclaimed male vocal quartet behind one of The New Yorker magazine's "Top Ten Notable Classical Music Recordings of 2012," has received a GRAMMY® nomination in the Best Chamber Music/ Small Ensemble Performance category for their 2013 release Times go by Turns (BIS Records/SACD BIS-2037). The quartet's fourth CD (and second on the BIS label), Times go by Turns has also been selected for iTunes' "Best of 2013", which features recordings chosen by the iTunes Editorial team http://www.itunes.com/Bestof2013Music .
Showcasing the ensemble's signature fusion of early music and modern sensibility, the album features performances of works by English Renaissance masters Thomas Tallis, William Byrd and medieval predecessor John Plummer, alongside contemporary selections written for New York Polyphony by Gabriel Jackson, Andrew Smith, and the late Richard Rodney Bennett. The GRAMMY® nomination builds on the already enthusiastic response Times go by Turns has received in the media since its release in July, 2013.
Classics Today awarded the disc perfect 10-out-of-10 scores for both artistic and sound quality, while Joshua Kosman in The San Francisco Chronicle wrote, "For a demonstration of how sumptuously beautiful the music of the English Renaissance can sound, you could scarcely do better than this superb new release by the vocal quartet New York Polyphony." Minnesota Public Radio's Valerie Kahler calls the singing of New York Polyphony "a remarkable and completely enveloping quilt of sound," and the Toronto Star hails Times go by Turns as "a rich and varied tapestry." Taking its title from a poem by the Jesuit martyr Robert Southwell, Times go by Turns documents the impact of religious and political conflict on the musical expressions of Roman Catholicism in 15th- and 16th-century England. The recently rediscovered Missa sine nomine of John Plummer-whose creative output was almost completely destroyed during the Reformation-offers a window into the flourishing of English Catholicism during the fifteenth century.
Born a generation later, Thomas Tallis witnessed the turbulent separation of England from the Papacy, and his Mass for Four Voices is an inspired marriage of function and beauty that skillfully straddled Catholic and Anglican sensibilities. By the end of the sixteenth century, anti-Catholicism in England was rampant. It is against this backdrop that William Byrd composed his own Mass for Four Voices, a deeply personal setting intended for clandestine worship at a time when dissidents were dealt with by cruel means. Bridging the ancient and modern, New York Polyphony adds contemporary color to Times go by Turns with two commissioned works. Norwegian composer Andrew Smith contributes the soaring Kyrie: Cunctipotens Genitor Deus and esteemed English composer Gabriel Jackson presents a playfully intricate setting of Ite missa est.