Monday, January 24, 2011

Music Monday--Challenge Week #4

 I've got two to review tonight.  First off is The Band Perry and their self-titled debut CD.              
I will tell you right now that I was not a fan of theirs.  When their first single Hip to My Heart came out, I would turn the radio dial so fast it would make your head swim!  I thought I would never hear a song of their that I liked.  Then I heard If I Die Young and saw their video, and I was hooked!  I began to toy with the idea of ordering their CD from the library.  I did, so here goes.    

You Lie is their newest single.  It begins their album.  I think what drew me to this song was having a compulsive liar in the house  (my dad) and the clever lyrics.  One thing this group has is unique lyrics.  Their use of similes and metaphors are quite entertaining.  Next is Hip to My Heart that I still don't like.  But it could  have been good if it were sung a little  differently.  Their best song is up next--If I Die Young.  I will post the video for this even though I posted it this summer.  I love the simplicity of this song.  It is their first number one hit.  Whenever I hear it, I am always put in a good mood.  Now how can a song about dying put someone in a good mood?  It's not sad--it is all about being content with the life you live.  And it has some poignant lines.  All Your Life is a beautiful song, and certainly well-sung.  I got a good chuckle out of Miss You Being Gone.  Again, their clever lines sell this song.  Not a big fan of Double Heart, but I love Postcard from Paris.  I didn't know that was the name of the song, but it makes perfect sense.  It is again very clever.  I know I keep using that  word, but there isn't a better word to describe their songs.  Maybe pithy would work for this song.  Walk Me Down the Middle is possibly my favorite on the album.  I love If I Die Young, but Walk Me Down the Middle is so sweet and happy.  I love the way it is sung.    Quittin' You and Lasso  were not stand-outs for me.  I would say that for a debut album,  these kids did well. They need someone to help them straighten out their rough edges and they could easily give Lady Antebellum or Rascal Flatts a run for their money.


Now on to the second CD.  It is a 2-CD set, and it actually took me a couple weeks to get through it.  I am a huge fan of the stage musical Phantom of the Opera, and I have seen it 3 times on  stage.  It is my favorite musical.  I remember when the movie came out,  and I saw it in the theater.  It was good--there are good points and bad points--and I enjoyed it.  I own the video, and I also own this CD.  I have only listened to it once before this.  I am not going to list the songs and review each one because it's just not that kind of CD.  It is a soundtrack CD.

Sometimes the movie actors get a really bad rap, I would say.  Loyal fans of the stage musical don't want to give this version too much credit,  but there are some points worth noting.  Gerard Butler is not Michael Crawford, but there are things I love about his Phantom.  He makes his Phantom extremely bitter, no one can match the points when he just "loses it."  His Phantom is very forceful, and you tend to believe that you would not hesitate to molest anyone.  I miss the gentleness you often see in the stage musical, and I also miss the warmth of singing voice of the Phantom.  You  get a hint of it now and then when Butler holds back, but when he tries to push his voice to do what it cannot, he does fail somewhat.

Emmy Rossum definitely has the voice for the role, and the looks.  I love her ingenue quality.  What I do not love is when she tries to take the classical quality out of her voice.  That is when she fails.  She is not much of an actress, but when she truly sings, she could sing any Christine out of the water.

I truly appreciate that they chose to include so much from the movie on the CD.  They use special effects, and they keep a lot of the speaking from the film on the CD to advance the story.  Some lyrics are changed so the songs make sense, but I don't like how they take away some of the singing and speak the lyrics.  I absolutely adore the orchestration!  Sometimes you miss out when you see a show live--you don't have access to a massive orchestra.  Never a problem in Hollywood.

My favorite character in the film is Carlotta!  She is exactly the way the part should be sung.  Here is Minnie Driver playing the role, but her voice was dubbed.  This is a great scene.  You'll figure out who Carlotta is!

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  1. oh i love Band Perry especially their Hip to My Heart Single... and i love this song too...

    The only song i knew from THe Phantom of the Opera is the Music of the Night performed by michael crawford
    thanks for sharing these 2 lovely videos
    have a great day and happy MM!

  2. I like it. Thanks for sharing. Happy MM!