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Stormy Seas

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Third time is a charm - especially if you have three charming ladies, who are prepating for the launch of their third album!

It's three to the power of three, so to speak, for the Trio Mediaeval, Norway's brightest star, when it comes to singing (which is to say a lot in a country that has brought forth extraordinary talents such as Jazz/Avantgarde/Noise/Etherial-voice Stina Nordenstam). Anna Maria Friman, Linn Andrea Fuglseth and Torunn Ostrem Ossum (appologies in advance for any spelling mistakes) have teamed up once again to present their irresitibile, mystical and eclectic mix of polyphonic medieval music from France and England and contemporary ballads and songs from other countries. While the latter mostly referred to their native Norway in the past, they took on the works of young and talented Korean Sungji Hong for "Stella Maris". Hong is one of those rare composers, who have made a name for themselves both in the field of traditional instrumentation, as well as what she calls "mixed media" - electro-acoustic pieces firmly entrenched in modernism. On top of that, she has managed to walk the fine line between the worlds of state-sponsored culture and the market-based music business: Her works have been commissioned by orchestras all over the world and, at the same time, been released on CD on various popular labels. ECM is the patron saint for this one and this "Girls only" record promises to be a stunning encounter of the new and the old. Norwegian papers were already awarding more stars than they had in their raving reviews of the disc.

At the same time, ECM is now offering the first Trio Mediaeval song collection "Words of the Angel" for a special Christmas discount: At 15 Euros, it's not exactly a smash (you're saving 3 Euros to invest in a cup of coffee), but this Gramophone's "Editor’s Choice" and Stereophile's "Recording of the Month" is worth every penny. Produced by the Hilliard Ensemble's John Potter, there's natural allusions to the English ensemble - but allready every indication of the individual handwriting that would make this trio such a treasure chest.

Having just rounded up its US-tour, the group will now rest a little, before hitting the road again in 2006. Have a charming end of the year, ladies!

Homepage: Trio Mediaeval
Homepage: Sungji Hong
Homepage: ECM Records

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