Bruckner: Mass in E minor and Motets (Download)


The Choir of King’s College, Cambridge
Academy of St Martin in the Fields
Sir Stephen Cleobury conductor

Released 16 October 2020

Available as mp3 download and 192kHz/24bit (Studio Master).

 Available as a cd

“It’s refreshing to hear this music sung with the urgent energy of boys’ voices… their Locus iste soars gloriously in the King’s Chapel acoustic.” – The Guardian

“[King’s College Choir] comes up trumps time and time again, delivering not only some exquisite soft singing but also, when required, plenty of full-throated – though never harsh – fortissimos.” ⭑⭑⭑⭑⭑ – Choir & Organ Magazine

“What Cleobury gets so effectively from this choir is the sense of everyone singing their socks off; as a valedictory farewell that’s incredibly moving. I’m absolutely in awe of the engineering on this recording… the vertical clarity you have running through the counterpoint is absolute. All in all it’s the perfect final recording from the late Stephen Cleobury.” – BBC Radio 3 Record Review

“This CD was [Stephen Cleobury’s] last album, recorded a few months before his death, and it’s a fine tribute. A lot of it is a cappella – unaccompanied – with the voices ringing out in lovely purity; horns and trombones are skilfully interwoven.” – The Independent

Bruckner’s E Minor Mass and a selection of his profoundly beautiful motets were selected by Sir Stephen Cleobury as his last album at King’s, recorded only a few months before his death. Perhaps the deepest and most spiritual of Bruckner’s masses, the Mass in E minor is unusual in its scoring for choir, wind and brass. It is recorded here by the Choir of King’s College, Cambridge and the Academy of St Martin in the Fields in King’s College Chapel.

The album is accompanied by a specially-commissioned Appreciation for Sir Stephen, written by Professor Iain Fenlon, as well as Shades of the Past in Bruckner’s Sacred Music – another commissioned essay on Bruckner’s works by Dr Martin Ennis.

“For many, Bruckner’s oeuvre is made up of nine fixed stars, the numbered symphonies, orbited by lesser bodies. One could, however, argue that sacred works such as those presented here take us to the heart of Bruckner, man and musician. Many of the pieces were commissioned; most are ‘Gebrauchsmusik’, in the sense that they served specific liturgical purposes. However, all reflect the composer’s deep commitment to his faith. Bruckner planned to dedicate his final, unfinished symphony to his ‘dear God’. The same dedication could stand at the head of any of the pieces heard on this album, the final recording of Sir Stephen Cleobury, whose legacy is a lasting ornament to King’s College, Cambridge.” —Dr Martin Ennis.

This album is offered in mp3 format and in Studio Master format at ultra-high 192k resolution, the highest available quality.

Anthon Bruckner (1824–1896)
1 Ecce sacerdoce magnus 6:04
Mass No. 2 in E Minor
2 I Kyrie 5:43
3 II Gloria 6:50
4 III Credo 7:58
5 IV Sanctus 2:42
6 V Benedictus 4:48
7 VI Agnus Dei 3:55
8 Tota pulchra es 4:48
9 Virga Jesse 3:17
10 Locus iste 2:38
11 Ave Maria 3:05
12 Christus factus est 5:18
Total playing time – 57:06


Recorded at 192kHz 24-bit PCM in the Chapel of King’s College, Cambridge, by kind permission of the Provost and Scholars, 18–19 March and 24–25 June 2020.

Producer & Editor Simon Kiln
Engineer Arne Akselberg
Assistant Engineers James Kiln & Benjamin Sheen
Mastering Simon Kiln & Simon Gibson

Consultant Claire Long

Label management Benjamin Sheen

This recording is supported by the Thain family in memory of Robin Thain and his passionate love of Bruckner’s music.