I have Gardiner's recording of this magnificent work and have listened to it many times over and it's truly wonderful; however, this new recording is superior in almost every respect. Paul McCreesh is a true Handelian. He seems to understand this composer almost better than any contemporary conductor, even Gardiner and that is saying quite a bit. Mr. McCreesh's affinity for this music is prevalent throughout and he coaxes wonderful performances from his singers, orchestra and chorus. The fact that he chose to represent the work in it's entirety also speaks volumes about his unyielding belief that "Solomon" does not contain the "deadwood" previously attributed to it. It's nice to know that some conductors are humble enough not to feel obligated to "improve" on a masterpiece. I liken the alteration of an original musical composition to the butchering of a master painting. Just because the nose is not as beautiful as the eyes on a portrait, does not give anyone the authority to replace said nose with another, more attractive nose, or, in some cases, nothing at all, merely because they believe it's detrimental to the work as a whole. Give me a major break. In the end, everything Handel wrote for "Solomon" works beautifully and the result is the full restoration of a truly magnificent oratorio. A splendid recording, through and through with Andreas Scholl especially impressive as the wise king. The chorus, too, is nothing short of brilliant. The acoustics of All Saints Church are ideal for this type of music, warm yet ample. Should you choose to purchase this recording, you won't be disappointed. I promise!