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4.3 out of 5 stars15
4.3 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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Not for classical music purists (though even they might use it to convince sceptics that their pre-conceived stereotypical assumptions about classical music are wrong), this is one of a series of compilations offering sample tracks from some of the best contemporary classical crossover artists. Like others in the series, this one was released for the Christmas market in the year before the date in the title (so it came out in November or December 2008). I suspect that 2008 was not such a great year for the release of new classical crossover albums, since many of the tracks are older, with only 17 of the 40 tracks having a 2008 copyright date. While earlier compilations in the series also contained older material, they didn't rely as heavily on it. Still, there's a lot of great music here.

Many of the songs will be familiar to people who don't necessarily follow classical music. Here you'll find covers of All by myself (popularized by Eric Carmen, who wrote the lyrics for an old classical tune by Rachmaninov), Abide with me (here performed by the Royal Scots Dragoon Guards), Amazing grace (here performed by Lesley Garrett), Ave Maria (here performed by Aled Jones), Somewhere (here performed by David Garrett), Danny boy (here performed by Bryn Terfel and Ronan Keating), the theme from Inspector Morse (here performed by Emma Johnson), Imagine (the John Lennon song here performed by the Fron male voice choir), The Lord is my shepherd (here performed by Katherine Jenkins) and Tears in heaven (the Eric Clapton song here performed by the Choirboys). Pie Jesu (here performed by Katherine Jenkins) and Time to say goodbye (here performed by Blake) were both huge UK pop hits for Sarah Brightman duetting with other artists.

Apart from those tracks, you may also recognize other famous artists including Luciano Pavarotti (singing Curuso) and Mike Oldfield (performing Aurora), Julian Lloyd Webber (performing The swan), Bond (singing Allegretto), Russell Watson (singing You raise me up) and Hayley Westenra (singing Pokarekare Ana) and the Salvation Army (performing Largo), whether or not you recognise the actual tracks.

Typical of other releases in the series, this is an easy-listening collection that is ideal for those who want to dabble in the fringes of classical music but who don't necessarily want to get in too deep.
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on 4 January 2010
We were very disappointed with this disc. There was not enough detail given about the content most of which was not true classical at all.
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 25 November 2008
Yet another great double CD box set in the classical album series! Containing all the best new versions of classical tracks, including Only Men Aloud, Bryn Terfel and Russel Watson to name but a few. I certainly don't feel anyone could go wrong buying this compilation!
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on 21 April 2010
Uninspired selection of cover versions and re-releases. This album falls far short of the standard set by previous compilations.
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on 14 April 2013
2 Cd's of music and songs well worth listening to. They are only excerpts so you don't get the full works but if you want to sit down and relax after a hard day's work, this is perfect. There is a set released every year and although some of the music is repeated, they are really cheap to get and a great buy I feel.
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on 17 August 2013
Anyone into popular classical music should enjoy this production. I now have several of the series on my shelves. Keep them coming.
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on 9 January 2014
I BOUGHT THIS AS A GIFT FOR SOMEONE BUT THEY WERE VERY PLEASED WITH IT I ALSO LIKED IT WHEN I HEARD IT
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TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICEon 9 December 2008
Another winning `The Classical Album' which offers such a good range of quality artists, from the recent Only Men Aloud to the experienced voice of Lesley Garrett.

As usual there's something for everyone, Katherine Jenkins, Russell Watson, Jonathan Ansell, Hayley Westenra, Alfie Boe, All Angels, Einaudi, Nicola Benedetti, Aled Jones, Blake... the star list goes on...

I love great compilations like this.
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on 10 December 2014
Fantastic service and product,
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on 10 November 2014
Excellent just what I wanted
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