The service of Matins is centred around the Morning Canticles from Stanford’s epic Service in C, Op 115, while Evensong takes its cue from Purcell’s masterful Evening Service in G minor, Z231. The Evensong anthem is the first recording of The King and the Robin, composed for the millennial celebrations of St Edward’s birth in 1005 with music by Philip Moore and words by the Poet Laureate, Andrew Motion.
The Eucharist setting is Jonathan Harvey’s adventurous Missa brevis, composed for the Abbey in 1995 and here receiving its first recording. This striking, but assuredly liturgical, work combines shouted text and chaotic choral passages into a whole of unusual impact.
“Exhilarating performances” - Daily Telegraph
“..early notice is served of how well the Abbey's choristers are currently singing... An admirably varied programme, with excellent Hyperion recording.”
- BBC Music Magazine
“As with the previous releases in this series, the choir (and organist Robert Quinney, who here ends the disc in sopectacular fashion with Jeanne Demessieux’s Te Deum), under the fluent direction of James O'Donnell, is above reproach” - International Record Review
“The range of musical styles is as varied as could be … The standard of singing and recording is fully equal to such demanding music, but it is equally satisfying to hear psalms and familiar canticles, Stanford in C (Morning) and Purcell in G minor (Evening) performed with such loving care. An excellent disc, highly recommended.” - Cathedral Music