I must admit to overlooking this album when it came out. It took Ray's appearance at the Olympics, and the beautifully poignant new song 'Postcard From London' to bring the special edition with this extra track to my attention. After listening to the samples on Amazon, I decided that it would be an interesting choice.
I am glad that I made the purchase. It's great to hear Ray's greatest song, 'Waterloo Sunset' in a context that updates this classic song with sensitivity. 'Victoria' and 'Celluloid Heroes' are better than the originals. And, the 'Village Green Medley' is absolutely superb.
Some reviewers hold the view that Ray's voice isn't strong enough to work with a choir, while others believe the choir overshadows the songs. I beg to differ. Ray paints pictures with his words and his phrasing. He never was the greatest voice in pop - but he always was one of its best songwriters and storytellers in an essentially English way. This collection proves that nothing has changed, except the setting, with a choir that assists him to recapture the magic without destroying the sacred qualities of the original works.
A great album from a remarkable talent. Thank you for the days, Ray and all the great songs along the way.