on 26 October 2011
This is a beautifully produced recording with an interesting selection of pieces. Three of them are new works and another two decidedly 20th century, so if you are not a fan of modern choral music, look away now. I have a preference for Renaissance polyphony myself, but the new setting of When David Heard by Whitacre has definitely grown on me. Two thirds of the way into the piece, however, he asks the virtually impossible of the sopranos, and it must be said that momentarily the result is not completely beautiful - but that is a small carp really; there is little fault to find with the choir elsewhere on the CD.
The trio of settings of the bible story of David weeping at the news of the death of his son Absalon (Gombert, Weelkes, Whitacre) is a masterful juxtaposition. I return to these three pieces again and again, and the CD is worth buying for them alone. The tenor who sings on the Whitacre surely has a great future as a professional singer. The Gombert (Lugebat David Absalon) is simply ravishing.
This is a fine choir with fine direction, and a very fine chapel whose beautiful acoustic rings through the whole recording. Well worth a listen.