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This first volume in a series devoted to Saint-Saëns’s works for organs and motets gets off to an intriguing start with a thoughtful recital contrasting the music of a Frenchman unabashedly ‘won over to atheism’ with that of his religiously-inclined close friend Franz Liszt, a man regularly ‘prey to mystic crises’. Immediately apparent, and (despite the noticeably Germanic accent adopted by Saint-Saëns) prompting a number of questions, are the obvious contrasts of style and substance. But so too is a consistently low-key approach by Genvrin and the Latvian Choeur Sacrum that tends to dampen the debate. Even so, a promising start.

MICHAEL QUINN Read the full review on Agora Classica

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Choir & Organ, 2012 - ©Rhinegold Publishing