The Choir of Merton College, Oxford has built up a substantial discography with Delphian but, in terms of forces involved, I fancy this is their biggest project to date – and quite possibly Delphian’s biggest project also ... There’s a beguiling, soft warmth to the sound of the choir and the strings in the background while in the foreground the soprano soloist [Aine Smith] offers beautiful, poised singing ... Turning to Lo the full final sacrifice, I think it’s a winner in every sense. The orchestral contribution is excellent throughout, while the Merton singers give a marvellous account of Finzi’s often tricky music. In particular, Crashaw’s mystical imagery is complex yet the words come over very naturally in this performance. That’s thanks in no small measure to Benjamin Nicholas’s conducting ... We know that the Merton choirs are among the elite of Britain’s collegiate choirs and this recording shows them, once again, on top form; their ongoing relationship with Delphian is hugely productive ... Delphian’s production values are up to their usual high standards. Producer Paul Baxter and engineer James Waterhouse have recorded the performances very successfully. One can hear lots of detail and the full ensemble is also reported very well. As I mentioned earlier, the resonant acoustic of All Hallows’ has been harnessed to good effect ... Michael Emery’s notes are excellent: they’re full of valuable information and make the listener keen to hear the music about which he’s writing. This is a terriffic disc"
John Quinn- MUSICWEB INTERNATIONAL
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