Howard Goodall: Inspired

14 January 2013, 15:44 | Updated: 18 January 2013, 14:03

A collection of well-known luscious choral arrangements matched with Goodall's new oratorio, Every Purpose Under the Heaven. Album of the Week, 14 January 2013.

Easing us gently into Goodall's beautiful melodies is the title track, Inspired, with its uplifting melody played by guitarist Craig Ogden, over a swelling chamber orchestra of piano, harp and strings. There's also a selection of his luscious choral music, including the theme to Mr Bean, otherwise known as Ecce Homo, and The Lord Is My Shepherd, theme tune to the Vicar of Dibley.

Goodall's choral writing may well sound fabulous when bookending TV programmes, but the music itself is a delight when heard on its own. Goodall's oratorio, Every Purpose Under the Heaven, combines the best elements of his instrumental and vocal writing, making use of atmospheric orchestral effects as well as raw choral writing conveying pure human emotion. It's a perfect vehicle for the Biblical text - fitting, then, that the oratorio was written as a 400th anniversary celebration of the King James Bible.

Whether sung, strummed, plucked, or bowed, Goodall's tuneful melodies shine through every piece on the album, in this moving collection of heart-warming music.