Wide general collection with easily legible scores Review by G. T. Heriz Smith (Amazon, Oct 2009)
There are so many hymn books out there on top of the range published by Kevin Mayhew that choosing any one of them is quite a task. The CoE group I worship in mostly uses in its various churches either this Hymns Old & New 'One Church, one faith, one Lord' edition (known as the 'red book') or the smaller 'New Anglican' edition (green book) as well as occasionally calling on A&M and a few others. The problem therefore was to try choose one that would just about cover both Mayhew books, but they say there's very little overlap between their editions. One really does not want to have to carry around two similar and fairly bulky compendiums. In the end I went for this book as it has more hymns and on inspection seemed to include most of the ones we sing from the 'New Anglican' although of course the numbering between the two is different!
What Kevin Mayhew could helpfully do is to publish a grid comparing the contents of all their books. The paper by the way is bible thin so watch out if you use post-its and it wouldn't handle much annotating.
What would be really clever of the publishers and would provide a big added value would be to have a website where bona fide purchasers could download simple wordless midi, avi or mp3 files accentuating each SATB part. This would probably be a more effortless way to learn harmonies than the usual problem of trying to read a reasonably clear score on one page and squinting at small typeface words on the other. (Posted on 15/01/2013)
One Church, One Faith, One Lord Review by Jonathan Scott
This hymn book represents a very good selection of hymns from the staple, 'old favourites' to the very modern. As such it should suit very well most Anglican Churches that need to cater for a variety of services.
Many of the hymns have been transposed down compared with the original A & M formats. This does ease the strain on the vocal range of the congregation for whom Top Es are definitely beyond reach. However, this does mean that for choirs that routinely sing in harmony, some of the bass and alto lines are low in the register.
Choirs accustomed to the A & M editions and their equivalents, may also find that the changes to some of the harmony lines are irritating and don't always improve the texture of the music.
The layout is generally good, though an organ copy with larger print and thicker paper would be advantageous. (Posted on 27/04/2010)