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John Rutter and the Cambridge Singers give a lovely account of the Benedictus from Fauré's Mess Basse with an expressive solo by an uncredited soprano. We then return to Russian Orthodox church music for Dobri Christov's Cherubic Hymn No 4, given a rapturous and finely idiomatic performance by Sofia Orthodox Choir. This is a great improvement over the second track on the disc. In keeping with what seems to be a significant contemporary strand running through this disc, Christov is a major 20th century Bulgarian composer.

This is followed by a haunting account of the 'In Paradisum' from Duruflé's Requiem. This is the sort of performance which stays with you long after its has finished and makes you dash out to buy the complete recording [listen -- track 7, 1:39-3:01].

The second Lauridsen piece on the disc is again performed by the Nordic Chamber Choir. Here O Nata Lux is given the quiet intensity that it needs. The Cambridge Singers then return with another In Paradisum, this time from Fauré's Requiem. I prefer the Duruflé, but this attractive performance is all that it needs to be.

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Copyright © 29 January 2007 Robert Hugill, London UK


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