Every Saturday night at 9pm-10pm, David Mellor reviews all the latest classical music releases.
This Saturday is the first of two shows where David will be reviewing his Christmas albums of the year. His seasonal new releases this week include two festive compositions by Benjamin Britten, a brass version of O Come All Ye Faithful and more from this week’s Featured Album on Drive, which showcases the talents of the Vasari Singers.
Advent at Merton
Choir of Merton College, Oxford
What David says : “This is performed extremely well and I think it is rather splendid. This is a well recorded, well performed album of very interesting music from Delphian.”
Journey Into Light
The Choir of Jesus College, Cambridge
What David says: "This album provides a lovely programme of music. The Choir of Jesus College, Cambridge perform beautifully and the album contains a lot of wonderful rarities.”
What David says: “Voces 8 create very attractive, sophisticated a capella arrangements of some of the best known Christmas carols. These young singers sing beautifully, it’s a great album with very nice arrangements."
Bright Star - Cadenza at Christmas
What David says: “Bright Star is a collection of lovely contemporary Christmas carols. 10 of the 22 tracks are world premiere recordings and I particularly like the title track Bright Star by Ben Parry - I find this album very pleasing indeed.”
A Winter’s Light
What David says: “This is a very well filled album from the Vasari Singers offering a wide-ranging collection of music including a carol medley. Although it’s not the best Christmas album around it offers a very enjoyable listen."
A Ceremony of Carols
Britten: A Ceremony of Carols & St Nicolas
The Choir of Trinity College Cambridge
What David says: “Stephen Layton is one of our finest choral conductors and this album offers an array of talent. A Ceremony of Carols is a truly magical and the coupling with the cantata Saint Nicolas makes a superb Christmas album. “
In the World of Spirits
Emory Symphonic Winds
Scott A Stewart
What David says: “Emory Symphonic Winds perform some very interesting music. It’s a newly recorded album, from this large, grand group of brass and wind instruments, offering great value.”
The Monteverdi Choir; The English Baroque Soloists
Soli Deo Gloria
John Eliot Gardiner
What David says: “This is an incredibly good value 6 CD box set for the festive season that will be particularly appreciated by music lovers who are looking for an alternative to the standard carols.”