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William Petter got up with the sunrise – his own cover photo from Paxos confirms the impression – and suffused his choral writing with light. Petter’s shockingly early death in 2016 (from clear cell sarcoma) preceded the present recording by just 17 days. He was adamant that the sessions, at the Royal Hospital chapel in Chelsea, should continue, and thankfully they did, a warm example of crowdfunding and friendly support. Right from the opening Lord’s Prayer, it is clear that this is a special disc and Petter an unusually wise and clear-sighted composer. The liturgical pieces, from a Vigil Mass and one dedicated to St Magnus, are exquisitely shaped and absolutely appropriate to context, while the Rose Singers bring an early-morning freshness and optimism to every measure.

BRIAN MORTON Read the full review on Agora Classica

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