Five hundred years ago the Reformation occasioned an upsurge in the production of church music, and even today Luther’s powerful sacred hymns continue to be mainstays in Lutheran religious services. However, Luther’s fruitful juxtaposition of “transmitted” and “modern” music shows that he was also fond of drawing on songs from the “old church.” The Lutheran chorale masses recorded by Hermann Max with his Rheinische Kantorei on vinyl more than thirty years ago represent a special form within these parallel – or shared – relational worlds. Even then the MDG sound engineers used the latest digital technology for the recording – which means that this welcome new edition could be transferred to CD without a hitch. Each one of the chorale masses is based on a Protestant church hymn. The (Latin) text of the (Lutheran) Mass with the Kyrie and Gloria is sung to the melodies of “Christ lag in Todesbanden,” “Christ, unser Herr, zum Jordan kam,” and “Nun komm, der Heiden Heiland,” and the whole is set in the strict contrapuntal style of Netherlandish vocal polyphony. Old and new doctrine and old and new musical practice could not form a more perfect union! Along with the chorale masses by Christoph Bernhard, Friedrich Wilhelm Zachow, and Johann Caspar Ferdinand Fischer, Hermann Max presents three works that were highly modern during their times: “Sacred Concertos” by Johann Hermann Schein on the same hymns. The virtuosic cooperation and opposition between the vocal and instrumental parts was an import from Italy and the latest rage there during Schein’s lifetime. Schein’s composed interpretations of his source texts ventured onto terrain normally reserved for theologians – at least in the old church. But this too is in the spirit of the Reformation: the “priesthood of all believers” can of course not be excluded from the musical sphere! And so this valuable new edition expands our view of Protestant church music, from a much too rarely considered but welcome perspective.