The USA Central Territory Music Department has released this fine collection of a dozen hymn arrangements scored for traditional brass quintet. The instrumentation provided with each set, which comes with a full score, is as follows: Part I – Bb trumpet I; Part II – Bb trumpet II (E Flat horn, F horn); Part III – F horn (E flat horn, Bb trombone treble clef, trombone bass clef; Part IV – trombone/euphonium BC Bb trombone/euphonium TC); Part V – tuba BC (E flat tuba TC, B flat tuba TC)
Drawn from the successful, flexible series ‘Hallelujah Choruses’, these arrangements rank among the best in that collection that now numbers over 280 song and hymn settings suitable for both accompanying congregational singing and as stand-alone pieces. The same is true for brass quintet usage – either for solo presentation or accompaniment. Eight are excellent settings by William Himes: All hail the Power (tune Coronation); Be thou my vision (Slane); Come, ye thankful people, come; fairest Lord Jesus; It is well with my soul; In Christ alone; Now thank we all our God; and Joyful, Joyful (with Len Ballantine). Himes has provided several mini-gems here, ranging from the lyrical and meditative in his setting of the old Irish tune Slane, Be thou my vision, to the majestic and uplifting variety, including his adaptation of Len Ballantine’s popular arrangement of the Beethoven tune, Joyful, Joyful. Himes is a master of this genre and groups will not go wrong in featuring these settings.