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Chandos New Releases
'Don’t expect passionate, rhapsodic outpourings along the lines of ‘Schelomo’. Majoring on austerity and restraint, Bloch’s Sacred Service (Avodath Hokodeth) post-dates his discovery of a bracing neo-classicism, best exemplified by the Concert grosso No. 1 and Piano Quintet No. 1, minor masterpieces we ought to hear more often. Apart from the language of its ritual, the Sacred Service often sounds like Vaughan Williams. The music is four-square and at times obsessively contrapuntal, yet the scoring has a deftness and luminosity that may come as a surprise.'

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