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Seven poems of Robert Bridges, Op 17

First line:
Beautiful must be the mountains whence ye come
1934/7; unaccompanied; Nos 1, 3, 4 & 7: SATB; No 2: SAT; Nos 5 & 6: SSATB
author of text

Finzi himself was dissatisfied with the Seven poems of Robert Bridges, as a letter to his friend Robin Milford shows. One difficulty here is that Bridges was almost exclusively a poet of the first person singular, so that setting his lyric poems chorally requires a composer to preserve the sense of a single composite voice. Finzi’s scrupulous respect for text shows in his limiting the imitative divergences whereby textures can be enlivened and pacing regulated—but words potentially obfuscated. Since songs one to six are all in a major key, and the seventh ambivalently poised between minor and major, it cannot be said that Finzi made things easier for himself. However, each of these sensitive, melodically disarming miniatures is attractive in itself, and the third of them lastingly popular, while in the sixth, ‘Haste on’ evokes from Finzi an apt canonic rhythm whereby the upper voices seem to be perpetually nudging the lower ones along. The only true problem here lies in programming the group in toto rather than individually; and therefore their perfect collective context is arguably a recording, not a live concert.

from notes by Francis Pott © 2019


Finzi: Choral works
Studio Master: CDA68222Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Time and its Passing
Studio Master: SIGCD445Download onlyStudio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


No 1: I praise the tender flower
Track 8 on CDA68222 [2'13]
No 2: I have loved flowers that fade
Track 9 on CDA68222 [2'52]
No 3: My spirit sang all day
Track 10 on CDA68222 [1'42]
No 4: Clear and gentle stream
Track 11 on CDA68222 [4'01]
No 5: Nightingales  Beautiful must be the mountains whence ye come
Track 12 on CDA68222 [2'55]
No 6: Haste on, my joys!
Track 13 on CDA68222 [1'57]
Track 6 on SIGCD445 [1'59] Download only
No 7: Wherefore tonight so full of care
Track 14 on CDA68222 [3'26]

Track-specific metadata for CDA68222 track 13

Haste on, my joys!
Recording date
11 July 2017
Recording venue
Trinity College Chapel, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Adrian Peacock
Recording engineer
David Hinitt
Hyperion usage
  1. Finzi: Choral works (CDA68222)
    Disc 1 Track 13
    Release date: August 2019
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