George Malcolm’s tenure as Master of Music at Westminster Cathedral between 1947 and 1959 was legendary. Malcolm fostered a ‘Continental’ sound (still very much in evidence today), which perfectly suits the choir’s core repertory. Malcolm’s Miserere mei, Deus
is an alternatim setting of Psalm 51, the lynchpin of the Ash Wednesday liturgy. It switches between upper voices and lower voices in the unadorned chant of the second mode, as well as in Malcolm’s sonorous polyphonic expansion and variation of the chant. The setting ends with all voices joining for the second half of the ‘Gloria Patri’ in statuesque descant.
from notes by Jeremy Summerly © 2013