Ken Walton
The Scotsman
October 2010

This debut recording by Christopher Bell's NYCoS National Girls Choir could so easily have been just another recording of Britten's A Ceremony of Carols, but for two things: the wholesome confidence of the choir itself, which performs the Britten briskly and with glorious precision; and the successful partnering (also with royal harpist Claire Jones) of Britten's masterpiece with Elizabeth Poston's edgy and colourful An English Day-Book. Poston teases tonality with the same open-mindedness as Britten—tempered dissonance within a traditional framework—but mood-wise both works are strikingly complementary. Oliver Iredale Searle's lean-textured On a Summer Night and Stephen Deazley's fuller The Ears of Mr Tuer complete a well-balanced, beautifully-presented programme.