The world's most spectacular musical The Lord of the Rings is finally transferred to cd and I have to say that the results are breathtaking. With music by Finnish group Värttinä, Bollywood genius A.R. Rahman and home grown talent Christopher Nightingale, The Lord of the Rings is a real treat to the ears. From the haunting opening of the Prologue through the energetic Cat and the Moon to the immense power of the Final Battle, the composers have brought their own musical interpretation to the story without imitating Howard Shore's music from the films and I think the piece is all the stronger and more enjoyable for it.
At times the sheer spectacle and wonder of the stage show draws focus away from the music and this cd redresses that. There are pieces of immense musical theatricality that at the same time wouldn't sound out of place on a classical music station and there are others such as the Song of Hope that fit perfectly into the musical theatre repertoire. The entire album stands up really well on its own, away from the context of the stage production.
The ever-dependable Laura Michelle Kelly turns in a faultless performance as the Queen of the Elves, Galadriel delivering a great rendition of Lothlórien, while Rosalie Craig's beautiful voice is shown off to great effect throughout.
As mentioned by a previous reviewer, this is a double cd and features a 5.1 surround sound dvd to allow you to enjoy the music in a different setting. There's even a tremendous booklet to accompany the cd with libretto and production shots from the Theatre Royal, Drury Lane.
I can see legions of listeners clutching their cds proclaiming it to be their precious! Count me in; I'll certainly be one of them!