Old Polish Music is a staggering piece of music. Consider that is was written as a partiotic piece while Poland was under the grip of communism. With that thought in mind, it is easy to imagine the dismay of the authorities as the strident, clear, hopeful, victorious? trumpet fanfares ring out. Old it may be, but i suspect that it was embarced by many young Poles in defiance of the grey facelessness of communism.
Beatus Vir is defiant in its own way. It begins no less energetically, and continues in this vein for some time, intoning, "Domine" like the Psalmist crying out to God, or like a persecuted and beaten believer who has nothing to cling on to except the name of the Lord and hope.
This - like so much of Gorecki's music - is not background stuff. It demands your attention, time, and a decent hi-fi to play it on.