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Since launching in 1997, Signum Classics has established itself as one of the UK’s leading and most reliable independent labels, its output ranging freely across genres and through the ages to create a catalogue of more than 300 recordings that can surely claim to be one of the most open-minded and catholic currently available. issued to celebrate the label’s first 15 years is a six-volume set (each separately themed disc also available individually) that cherry-picks from the back catalogue to provide a value-for-money introduction both to Signum and to the genre under consideration itself.

Typical of the delightful bran-tub eclecticism to be found on all of these compendium discs is the A Cappella Collection. Boasting contributions from venerable vocal ensembles such as the BBC, King’s and Swingle Singers alongside relative newcomers Les Sirènes and Voces8 among others, the repertoire stretches from Monteverdi to Michael Jackson and is dispatched with consummate ease by all involved. Organ Collection offers more robust fare. Dominated by music from the 19th and 20th centuries, the roll-call of soloists – Jeremy Filsell, naji hakim and Simon Preston among them – is as self-recommending as the opportunity to hear an array of notable organs including those in the cathedrals of Westminster, Gloucester, Freiburg and Tulle, in La Madeleine and Saint-Sulpice in Paris, in the colleges of Eton and Glenalmond, and even in Buckingham Palace. among the plentiful gems here, David Goode’s Messiaen in Eton, Samuel Wesley’s Choral Song courtesy of James Vivian in London’s Temple Church, and Robert Quinney’s haunting performance of ‘Nimrod’ in Westminster Abbey especially stand out.

Formidable programming and impressive contributions – notably the Huddersfield Choral Society, BBC and Vasari Singers, Ex Cathedra, Gabrieli Consort among a host of others – mark out the Choral Collection as something rather special indeed. With repertoire choices embracing Tallis and Allegri (spellbinding accounts of Spem in alium and Miserere from Chapelle du Roi and Tenebrae respectively), Bernstein’s striking Chichester Psalms, Tippett’s evocative setting of Over the Sea to Skye, Bob Chilcott’s sirenic The Lily and the Rose, pieces by Bach, Handel and contemporary voices such as Geoffrey Burgon, Patrick Hawes, Alec Roth and Eric Whitacre (the beguiling Lux Aurumque), this is a disc that can surely claim to have something for every taste and temperament.

All volumes come with basic track listings and thumbnail images of the original album’s sleeve.

MICHAEL QUINN Read the full review on Agora Classica

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Choir & Organ, 2013 - ©Rhinegold Publishing