Western choral music is one of the foundational influences on the sound of what we do and, for me especially, it's the grounding of a good deal of the harmonic and melodic content of our records.
A thousand years of this tradition has produced a great diversity of music, both secular and sacred. Liturgical music is, of course, it's wheelhouse and this is especially true during the Christmas period. Even to my firmly secular ears, this is some extraordinarily beautiful music and a mainstay of my musical background.
Determined as I am to give it a wider audience, here are two mixes of Christmas choral music that I have done, both containing lesser known carols and songs from early plainsong to modern classics. Each mix also contains a carol written by me - two very different settings of work by the poet Katherine Venn. Both can be streamed and downloaded below. Full tracklistings are available by clicking through to the Soundcloud page. Warm up a mince pie and enjoy. Andy.:
Many carols take the form of lullabies to the infant Jesus and this mix is a collection of music loosely based around this theme. The Christmas story can inspire a huge range of responses from the reflective to the joyous and this music tracks the variety of human celebration around this feast.
Whilst religious I certainly am not, the idea of the 'mystery' of the divine is compelling and has inspired a huge amount of art. This collection is largely more esoteric than the first and spans a huge range of Christmas traditions from across the continent.