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John Quinn
MusicWeb International, February 2014

The standard of performance is high throughout. The choir sings extremely well and where an organ accompaniment is required Michael Bloss offers excellent support. This is another enjoyable recital from the choir of St John’s Elora where the tradition of church music is clearly being tended and nourished with dedication and skill. © 2014 MusicWeb International Read complete review

Lindsay Koob
American Record Guide, November 2013

Here’s a serene and worshipful assortment of mostly famous motets and Psalm settings in modified Anglican chant format from Noel Edison’s dependable Choir of St John’s, Elora…

Organ support is excellent…sound quality is…very good, and the booklet is more than adequate. © 2013 American Record Guide Read complete review on American Record Guide

Brian Wigman
Classical Net, May 2013

This is an exceptional and very handy collection of international choral motets and psalms.

I didn’t need another version of Tavener’s The Lamb, and you probably didn’t either, but it’s a marvelous and justly popular work. Everything else on this generously-filled disc is entirely welcome and hard to find elsewhere. The tracks are sensibly laid out to create a real sense of flow, and the quality of singing, organ playing, and interpretation is first-rate. Even if you don’t gravitate naturally to such a recording, you may find yourself captivated by the sheer tonal beauty of the works here. It’s especially interesting to look at the evolution of religious music over time, and how easily the Elora singers navigate the changing moods and texts.

Noel Edison has proved himself to be one of the finest choral conductors working today. Each recording he and his choirs make is not only terrifically sung, but very well engineered. This disc is no exception. Balances between sections are superb, and the acoustics at the choirs’ home base in Ontario are equally so. Simply stunning. © 2013 Classical Net Read complete review

John Terauds
Musical Toronto, March 2013

The Choir of St John’s, Elora, director Noel Edison and organist Michael Bloss are at it again, with a new Naxos release titled Psalms and Motets for Reflection, a fine collection of Anglican music that is worth the attention of even the most adamant non-believer.

When done well—as it is here—there is a wonderfully elastic yet predictable cadence to the singing that is as conducive to relaxing a tortured soul…

The choir is beautifully balanced and Bloss does a fine job in colouring the organ accompaniments.

The overall audio quality is warm, soft-edged and clear.

Turn down the lights, switch off the mobile devices, and enjoy. © 2013 Musical Toronto Read complete review

David Denton
David's Review Corner, March 2013

A disc of eighteen religious compositions from both sides of the Atlantic, spread over five different centuries and performed by a Canadian church choir. It also covers the familiar to seldom heard works, and includes a 2005 commission by the choir from the Australian-born Paul Halley. Starting out in Germany the 17th century with Johannes Eccard’s six part motet, Maria wallt zum Heiligtum, we pass through England in the following century with the now little-known English composer, William Crotch, and his setting of Psalm 47. The late 19th century is marked by a ‘pop’ classic of its day, God so loved the world from John Stainer’s The Crucifixion, the disc moving to the late 20th century with one of the most popular short choral works, John Tavener’s The Lamb. At much the same time in United States we have the highly prolific Stephen Paulus with the Pilgrims’ Hymn, and joining Paul Halley in the present century we have the hauntingly beautiful Remember, O Lord from Jonathan Harvey. Very sensibly the choir do not change their tonal quality throughout, but concentrate on very good intonation and internal balance, sopranos taking the place of boy trebles in the earlier works. That we either enjoy or miss them—depending on taste—as it changes that inherent hooty quality much loved in British church choirs. Discrete accompaniment from the organ of Michael Bloss… © David’s Review Corner

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10:50:51 PM, 1 December 2015
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