It is ironic that the putative decline of the “chill” compilation should have coincided with the beginnings of the coronavirus pandemic, when people were most in need of solace. And yet this last year has seen the release of several exquisite albums of choral music which could be seen as “niche”, but which contain music and performances of such transcendent beauty that nobody who heard them could fail to be comforted and transported. This is one of those albums.

The Sixteen

Good Night, Beloved – the title comes from Ciro Pinsuti’s British Choral Society “staple” Good night, good night beloved , with words by Longfellow – captures the mood of times past and present with (mostly) unaccompanied sacred and secular choral music and part-songs from the 15th century (William Cornysh’s Ah Robin, gentle Robin ) to today (premiere recordings of commissioned works by James MacMillan and Will Todd). The jaunty I am a jolly foster (Anon) and Hoyda, hoyda, jolly...