The text is perfect for an encore, and the setting is commendably straightforward given the beauty of the original melody, with only one change of key and no added accidentals. * Geffrey Webber, Choir & Organ, November 2016 * Howard Helvey is one of the most protean composers active today, with an impressively diverse toolbox of compositional approaches, techniques, and resources. His setting of this American folk-tune draws upon several of these voices, synthesizing seemingly disparate veins of treating a pre-existing melody . . . Even as Helvey harmonizes the familiar tune with completely diatonic additive harmonies, his structure of chords consistently surprises and enthrals the ear.
Adding to the interest, he varies textures and makes an effectively startling unprepared key change from G major to B flat major that heightens the import of the text . . . This is not music for half-hearted singers. For choirs with a sense of adventure, whatever their technical aptitude, Helvey's
take is well worth the effort. * Jason Overall, Journal of the Association of Anglican Musicians (US), Sept 2016 *show more