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This second release from King’s College, Cambridge’s home-grown label offers a thoroughly recommendable middle-of-the-road reading of the familiar Süssmayr completion of Mozart’s final composition, a performance that holds one’s attention throughout. It is good to hear the famous Requiem sung by an all-male choir, with boy trebles taking the soprano line, and the expert period-instrument players of the AAM; the effect is surely close to how Mozart would have expected the work to sound, had he lived. Certainly the small forces employed bestow an intimacy on this familiar music that is totally engaging and often illuminating. The excellent line-up of soloists (Gilchrist and Purves are former King’s choristers) could hardly be bettered, and Cleobury steers his forces through a most moving account. Where Cleobury’s recording gains over others is by giving us five additional tracks sampling movements from more recent Requiem completions by Maunder, Levin (two examples), Druce and Finnissy, and a fascinating hour-long documentary by Mozart scholar Cliff Eisen on a second CD. Highly recommended.

PHILIP REED Read the full review on Agora Classica


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