|1. Only The Lonely|
|2. Angel Eyes|
|3. What's New|
|4. It's A Lonesome Old Town|
|5. Willow Weep For Me|
|7. Blues In The Night|
|8. Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out To Dry|
|9. Ebb Tide|
|10. Spring Is Here|
|11. Gone With The Wind|
|12. One For My Baby (And One More For The Road)|
|13. Sleep Warm|
|14. Where Or When|
From the start of this album and "Only the Lonely" we know what this is about and who it's for. Girls may love Sinatra but this is for all us guys who love them, who love them hard and with everything, and lose. It was something Sinatra knew well and he was never more perfect and eloquent in his tone and phrasing than right here. The sadness and longing as Frank drowns along with us is masterful and the continuity of the album itself is amazing. One great song is followed by another as Sinatra sings all the things we feel.
The more upbeat "Come Fly With Me" stuff from other concept albums was great but by the end of this recording we feel as if we actually know Frank. After all, it's past midnight in this smoky bar and we've been swapping our tales of woe for hours. "One For My Baby, and One More For the Road" is my personal favorite though you could pick just about any cut and not go wrong. This is truly an intimate and personal recording by the greatest artist of our century. Sinatra knew heartache and made it seem ok to be all messed up about a girl, wondering if love would ever come down the road again.
If you don't own this Sinatra recording yet, you are missing something really special that passed this way. So set 'em up Joe, I"ve got a Little Story to Tell....
From the opening track - Only the Lonely (a new piece written specially for the album by Sammy Cahn and Jimmy Van Heusen) - to the final clamactic chord on the previously unissued "Where or When", Sinatra shows the listener many stages of sadness. In the plaintive opening track, he is the detached narrator, preparing you for the rest of the album. In the poignant "Guess I'll Hang My Tears Out to Dry", Sinatra is in emotional turmoil concerning a present love or loss. And in the climax of the album (or anti-climax, depending on how you look at it), the sobering "One For My Baby", Sinatra is a battered and beaten voice of experience.
Utilising an enormous ensemble, larger than that on "The Concert Sinatra", "Only the Lonely" is a treasure you will keep for as long as you live, a far cry from the horrific soft-rock attempts of the late sixties and seventies by Sinatra.
The mastering and production is crystal clear on this disc, as is the playing. Riddle's orchestrations are masterpieces in their own right, many possessing a Stravinskian, certainly symphonic quality. And the misery and suffering of the singer, on this wonderful album, will haunt you whenever you are listening. This is a true companion to have, and one that demonstrates the most underrated, under publicised part of Sinatra - his singing. Whenever anyone asks you why Robbie Williams can never measure up to the sheer force of Frank's talent, just show them this CD!
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