Textura Magazine features Ben Moore and the new Gathering recording on the home page alongside a marvelous new review:
“There’s so much to like about this collection of songs by Ben Moore (b. 1960), it’s hard to know where to begin. Let’s start with the material itself, twenty-two songs that span the spectrum of emotional experience with dignity and poise. The American composer’s music has been called “gorgeously lyrical” (The New York Times) and commended for its “romantic sweep” (Opera News), and many a song on Gathering exemplifies those qualities, plus a great deal more.… Finally, helping to distinguish Moore’s music is a stellar cast of singers, all of them wholly sympathetic to the composer’s vision and supported wonderfully by pianist Brian Zeger, Moore’s husband. Any composer would be thrilled to have Isabel Leonard, Liz Callaway, Matthew Polenzani, Janai Brugger, Michael Kelly, Alexander Gemignani, and Joseph Lattanzi in their corner.… Though the text for “Alas! This is Not What I thought Life Was” was written by Percy Bysshe Shelley around 1818, its words about hate and suffering spoke to Moore in light of George Floyd’s murder (for “A Holy Place,” the composer went even further back by setting music to words by Sappho from 2600 years ago). Given a heartfelt reading by soprano Brugger, the dramatic song makes for a powerful entry-point to the sixty-seven-minute recording. The first presentation of Moore’s lyrical side arrives with “Lullaby,” adapted from Christina Rossetti’s 1883 poem “Lullaby, Oh, Lullaby!” and delivered poignantly by mezzo-soprano Leonard.… Baritone Lattanzi gives stirring voice to “Requiem,”… “Where are the songs of spring?” and “Ah, happy, happy boughs,” moving realizations by Moore of respective stanzas from Keats’s “To Autumn” and “Ode on a Grecian Urn” and rendered affectingly by tenor Polenzani.… Leonard inaugurates the second section with a gorgeous performance in “I Travel as a Phantom Now,” the impact of its words by Thomas Hardy amplified by the elegiac character of the music. … the graceful “Between the Lights” changes things up by having an impassioned Brugger sing a prose excerpt from Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own. … At the album’s centre, the “Toward Acceptance” section is arguably the collection’s most moving for the yearning expressed in its five songs. Lattanzi pairs with Callaway for the first two, “And Another Song Comes On” and “Play My Song,” both from the cycle And Another Song Comes On and featuring words by Mark Campbell. … The composer smartly caps the collection with stirring expressions of hope, with Callaway’s beautiful vocal turns in the lilting “A Moment Like This” and “See How a Flower Blossoms” inducing chills and Leonard’s in “On Music” guiding the set to a triumphant close—“Let music fill your heart” indeed.… Gathering is, put simply, a magnificent collection by Moore and certainly as strong an argument as could be fashioned to testify to his artistry, and as the songs were written over a span of thirty years, it offers a superb overview.… How fortunate he is—we also—to have had Zeger and the seven singers partner with him for the project.”—Ron Schepper, Textura
See the full review on Textura.org!