One of the greatest things about the album is quite how refreshingly different it is from most hymns CDs. Cathedral choirs tends to sing with an austere beauty -- or perhaps majesty is a better word; and yet they fail to capture the joy which the hymnists (chiefly Wesley and Watts) wanted to express in so many of their hymns.
No cathedral choir could ever hope to achieve the same effect in their singing of And can it be?, for instance, nor Away with our sorrows and care, which has quickly become a well-loved hymn of my own through this CD.
I have also appreciated the different settings to which the band has placed some of the hymns. For instance, How firm a foundation has been given a lovely tune from the golden days of the Union railroad (if only the band had a harmonica player!)
The instrumental section (track 9) is also brilliant. Who said hymns couldn't be fun? The band plays the tunes for All things bright and beautiful and Let us with a gladsome mind at good speed and, with the eighteenth-century style instruments, the music wouldn't sound out of place in a barn dance!
In all, I enjoy listening to this CD a lot and am hoping that I shall soon learn the words to all the hymns I don't yet know!
Track listing: 1. Who Would True Valour See
2. Rejoice Ye Shining Worlds
3. O Thou Who Camest From Above
4. Lo He Comes With Clouds Descending
5. How Firm a Foundation
6. O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing
7. As Pants the Hart
8. The God of Abraham Praise
9. Instrumental: The Twenty-Ninth of May or The Jovial Beggars, Monkland
10. Light of the World
11. All Hail the Pow'r of Jesus' Name
12. Lord, in the Morning
13. Away With Our Sorrows and Care
14. Christ the Lord Is Ris'n Today
15. O Worship the King
16. And Can It Be?
1. Who Would True Valour See