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Press Releases

Heresy Records Announces Friday 10th July Release Of “The Red Book Of Ossory” By Anakronos

July 9, 2020 | By Helene Kamioner, Director
Creative Consultants for the Arts

Heresy Records Announces Friday 10th July Release Of “The Red Book Of Ossory” In Critically Acclaimed Debut By Anakronos Starring Singer Caitriona O’leary With Francesco Turrisi, Keyboards & Percussion, Deirdre O’leary, Clarinets, Nick Roth, Saxophones

Groundbreaking Ensemble Anakronos Fuses Medieval Music & Jazz Against Backdrop of Notorious Witchcraft Trial of Dame Alice Kyteler & the Burning of Petronilla de Meath in 1324

Link to the Album, The Red Book of Ossory

https://soundcloud.com/heresy-records/sets/the-red-book-of-ossory/s-pxFe5zvXSuS

Video trailer on the making of The Red Book of Ossory

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1qJ0-MsSx8w&t=6s

ANAKRONOS

CAITRÍONA O’LEARY, Voice (www.caitrionaoleary.com )

DEIRDRE O’LEARY, Clarinets (https://www.crashensemble.com/personnel/deirdre-oleary)

NICK ROTH, Saxophones (http://nickrothmusic.com/nrm/index.asp)

FRANCESCO TURRISI, Keyboards & Percussion (https://www.francescoturrisi.com/

ArtMuseLondon     https://artmuselondon.com/2020/07/08/body-and-soul-anakronos-the-red-book-of-ossory/amp/

A work of singular genius. This brilliant suite of songs practices its own apparent witchcraft, seducing you straightaway with its beauty.”

Bernard Clarke, RTÉ Lyric fm www.rte.e

"... this is not music that you listen to while folding your laundry, or washing the dishes. It is too powerful for that; you stop doing what you’re doing and you’re pulled into the world of the music. You may not be familiar with that world, but regardless, you will feel it in the music."

Absolutely extraordinaryOne of the best albums I've heard this year. Musically the gang are firing on all cylinders; thematically it's fascinating; and historically it is horrifying and illuminating in equal measure.”

Dick O'Riordan, Sunday Business Post: https://www.businesspost.ie/music/classical-notes-early-music-with-burning-issues-at-stake-621448e3

"My anticipation soared when I opened the CD booklet, a beautiful production in all the key areas of design, historical background, musical intention and musicianship -- particularly the latter”

The Red Book of Ossory is an important 14th century Irish manuscript and a true tale of political intrigue, sex, sorcery, murder and music. The collection of texts includes 60 poems by Richard de Ledrede, Bishop of Ossory. The lyrics of the songs on this album are by the 14th century Bishop of Ossory, Richard de Ledrede.

This brilliant suite of songs practices its own apparent witchcraft, seducing you more or less straightaway with its beauty – which doesn’t fade after repeated listens. But as the debut album from Anakronos grows more familiar, it reveals and revels in layer after layer of sinister chills and thought-provoking arrangements and effects. ArtMuseLondon

The bishop instructed that these lyrics be sung by the priests, clerks and choristers of the St Canice’s Cathedral “on the important holidays and at celebrations in order that their throats and mouths, consecrated to God, may not be polluted by songs which are lewd, secular, and associated with revelry, and, since they are trained singers, let them provide themselves with suitable tunes according to what these sets of words require”.  Accordingly, Anakronos founder Caitríona O’Leary has set de Ledrede’s esoteric and imagistic poetry to music from a multitude of medieval sources including Chansonnier du Roi, Llibre Vermell de Montserrat, Codices Chantilly, Modena, Squarcialupi and others. 

Upon his arrival from the papal court at Avignon to Kilkenny in 1317 Ledrede immediately set about challenging the secular authorities and making a name for himself as a zealous moralizer and "scourge of heresy". In 1324 he arraigned Dame Alice Kyteler, a wealthy businesswoman and serial espouser (she married four times) on the charge of being a witch.  He alleged that she denied Christ, enchanted the citizens of Kilkenny with magic potions made from the entrails of cocks which had been sacrificed to demons, dead men’s nails, hair and brains of boys who had been buried unbaptised, all cooked up in the skull of a decapitated thief, that she had a demon lover named Artisson with whom she had sex in public, and that she murdered her first three husbands and was poisoning her fourth. Dame Alice, however, had powerful allies who protected her and facilitated her flight to England where she vanished from history.

Though Dame Alice escaped with her life, her servant Petronilla de Meath was not so fortunate. She was captured, flogged through six parishes and a confession of sorcery was extracted. She was burned alive at the stake for the heresy of witchcraft, the first person in history to be thus charged and immolated.

The Red Book of Ossory is available on www.heresyrecords.com,  in records shops internationally and online at Amazon, Spotify, Apple Music, Deezer, Presto Music and streaming and digital service providers.


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