There is no doubt that this disc is filled with beautiful renditions of Vaughan William's music, but it sounds as if they are being performed by shadowy spectres sleep walking through the half light. There is no life and no energy to their singing.
This would matter less if the music were someone elses, but it of the essence of Vaughan Williams that he sought to provide church music for the people which was designed to soar heavenward. He therefore filled his choral works and hymns with both peasant vigour and a joyful reaching for the beyond. Neither quality is given voice to here.
So, if you want a hour of soothing music to relax to at the end of a hectic, stress filled day this may well do the job. If you want to hear these works as Vaughan Williams intended them to be sung you will have to look elsewhere.
The selection here is good if short, excepting that there is only one real hymn here 'Come Down O Love Divine'. Given that Vaughan Williams was a great Hymn writer and arranger it is to be hoped that Naxos will release another disc of his hymns, and this time secure the services of a choir who will give it some welly, as they say up north.