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Puer natus est: Christmas Day Mass from Buckfast Abbey

The Choir of Buckfast Abbey presents music for the Mass of Christmas Day. Weaving between the Gregorian chant propers are George Malcolm’s evocative Missa ad Præsepe (Mass at the Crib), and traditional carols and festive motets. The much-loved hymn Adeste fideles opens the Mass, progressing from the original plainsong melody through to a dramatic new arrangement of the penultimate verse, epitomising the joy of the Incarnation.

★★★★  ‘We are called to the Mass with the processional Adeste fideles and, as the fine organ introduction comes to a conclusion, the sacristy bell rings, and the choir sing, we know we are in for a treat… This CD brings peace and harmony and conveys the true message of Christmas.’ (Organists’ Review)

If you can’t get to a Christmas service this year, this is a superbly recorded album and compensation…
(BBC Radio 3 Record Review)

‘The Buckfast Abbey choir have Gregorian chant coursing through their veins, and the ease and naturalness of delivery is a joy to behold.‘ (MusicWeb International)

The recording is a reconstruction of Christmas Day Mass at the Abbey, and it has the ring of authenticity through and through…it is a thoughtfully conceived and really quite spiritual experience. The lines are well shaped, and dynamic shading is subtle and effective. All in all, this is a delightful recording.’ (Cathedral Music Magazine)

If you may have had quite enough of Christmas carol anthologies on CD, but like at least some seasonal music then this superb issue may be the solution… I cannot stress too strongly that the quality of the singing, playing and directing, to say nothing of the wonderfully atmospheric recording, are exceptionally good. Listening, enthralled, is a truly immersive experience – close your eyes and you feel you are right there.’ (British Music Society)

…the intimacy of the Buckfast recording makes for a very particular musical experience, with works by Victoria, Holst, George Malcolm and others, all under the far-from-tyrannical eye of conductor Philip Arkwright.‘ (Choir & Organ)


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Track List

1

Gregorian chant, arr. Murray, Davies, Willcocks & Ledger

Adeste fideles

6:02

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2

Gregorian chant

Introit: Puer natus est

3:29

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3

George Malcolm

Kyrie (Missa ad Præsepe)

2:09

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4

George Malcolm

Gloria (Missa ad Præsepe)

5:20

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5

Philip Duffy

Responsorial Psalm 97

2:36

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6

Gregorian chant

Alleluia: Dies sanctificatus

2:34

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7

arr. David Willcocks

Unto us is born a Son

2:59

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8

Richard Runciman Terry

Myn lyking

3:28

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9

George Malcolm

Sanctus (Missa ad Præsepe)

2:52

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10

George Malcolm

Benedictus (Missa ad Præsepe)

1:43

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11

George Malcolm

Agnus Dei (Missa ad Præsepe)

2:04

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12

Gregorian chant

Communio: Viderunt omnes

7:02

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13

Gustav Holst

In the bleak midwinter

4:17

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14

Tomás Luis de Victoria

O magnum mysterium

3:53

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15

Gregorian chant

Sequence: Puer natus in Bethlehem

7:30

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16

arr. David Willcocks

Of the Father's heart begotten

4:57

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17

George Baker

Toccata-Gigue on the Sussex Carol

5:10

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