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Bruckner’s sacred music seems to be popular at the moment. Apart from the usual favourites such as Locus iste, Os justi and Pange lingua, there are some surprises here. The Mass in C (the Windhaager Messe) is an early work for altos, two horns and organ, and is something of a curiosity, omitting some of the text of the Gloria and Credo. Though lacking invention, it shows to advantage the fine alto line of the NDR Chor Hamburg. Inveni David for TTBB and trombone displays Bruckner’s accomplishment at illustrating a text, as does Ecce sacerdos magnus in eight parts with three trombones and organ written for the ceremonial entry of the Bishop. There is some interesting music to dip into, emphasised by the very good voices of the North German Radio Choir, who have a clear, rich tone and control crescendos and diminuendos to perfection.

SHIRLEY RATCLIFFE Read the full review on Agora Classica

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