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Psalm 67

First line:
God be merciful unto us, and bless us
2012; B solo + SATB divisi; commissioned by Soli Deo Gloria Inc USA for Polyphony and Stephen Layton who gave the first performance in Amsterdam on 10 November 2012
author of text

The afterglow of Ešenvalds’ engagement with the Anglican choral tradition, as could be experienced on a daily basis during his time in Cambridge, can be heard in Psalm 67, premiered by Stephen Layton and Polyphony in Amsterdam in 2012. Twice a solo baritone chant replete with the characteristic cadence of countless versicles (a deliberate allusion or an unconscious borrowing?) is answered by the full choir in chordal writing of questing, shifting tonality. This is the most chromatic music on this recording—a music of mingled praise and apprehension. At the close of the piece the baritone’s chanted melody returns, again with its occasional octave doubling by sopranos and altos—an especially subtle bit of voicing—but this time anchored by a sustained chord of E flat. The last word of the piece is simply ‘God’—the voice of supplication distilled to a single syllable.

from notes by Gabriel Jackson © 2015


Ešenvalds: Northern Lights & other choral works
Studio Master: CDA68083Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 3 on CDA68083 [5'28]

Track-specific metadata for CDA68083 track 3

Recording date
11 January 2014
Recording venue
Trinity College Chapel, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Adrian Peacock
Recording engineer
David Hinitt
Hyperion usage
  1. Ešenvalds: Northern Lights & other choral works (CDA68083)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: February 2015
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