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Hymns from King's
     

Hymns from King's

by Choir of King's College
 
This album accompanies a printed volume of hymns from King's College, Cambridge, arranged by the present conductor, Stephen Cleobury, longtime director of the King's College Choir. The hymn arrangements are of a thoroughly traditional nature, and many of them in fact build on earlier versions. The hymns are mostly quite familiar in Anglican tradition, and several are

Overview

This album accompanies a printed volume of hymns from King's College, Cambridge, arranged by the present conductor, Stephen Cleobury, longtime director of the King's College Choir. The hymn arrangements are of a thoroughly traditional nature, and many of them in fact build on earlier versions. The hymns are mostly quite familiar in Anglican tradition, and several are international hits; "Love divine, all loves excelling" (track five, which makes a good place to start sampling) will be better known to North American and increasingly English listeners as "What a friend we have in Jesus." It might seem a little too far on the safe side, but this is one of those releases that accomplishes the neat trick of appealing both to listeners who want that safe side (and keep buying a steady stream of English collegiate choral releases) and those interested in the nature of the tradition involved. Cleobury's arrangements seem simple, but in fact they draw subtly on a long tradition. Often they have the quality of glosses on an established setting of a hymn by the likes of Vaughan Williams, Handel, or a host of lesser-known composers, with Cleobury adding a new wrinkle such as a descant or a line of chromatic harmony (never very chromatic) in one of the later verses. The history of each hymn is traced in the concise yet detailed booklet notes by Nicholas Temperley, which may be worth the price of admission by themselves. The other tradition involved is that of the organ at King's College, whose players, like Cleobury, operate within a matrix of tradition and freedom. Cleobury's arrangements in many cases are designed to let the King's organ shine, and it is one of the most brilliant among its peers. A recording that will be welcomed by several different constituencies even if not by all listeners.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/10/2016
Label:
Choir King's College
UPC:
0822231701422
catalogNumber:
14
Rank:
63548

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