on 29 March 2003
I believe this is the first ALW cd that Sarah and ALW worked on. Yes they are new recordings, but since this is from 1995, then they arent so new anymore. There is a selection of songs from ALW's musicals. Drawbacks are that is doesn't have 'Phantom Of The Opera' and 'Memory'. A lot of these songs are slow ones from the romantic musicals such as 'Song and Dance' and 'Aspects of Love' and Sarah sings them beautifully. The booklet doesnt have lyrics but there are notes from Andrew Lloyd Webber and a commentry for each song written by Andrew. The photography is beautiful in the leaflet. The best of songs on this album is probably 'Surrender', 'Unexpected Song', (which both contribute to the title of the album 'Surrender: The Unexpected Songs') and one we don't see often: 'Everythings Alright.' A pleasent listen are the different versions of Memory (Piano - Italian version) and 'Don't Cry For Me Argentina' (Spanish version). As far as I know, you won't find these two versions on any other cd.
This is a must buy for any Sarah Brightman fan. I also think Andrew Lloyd Webber fans (Yes I know every single artist under the sun has done an ALW cd) will enjoy this since it has rare tracks and rare versions, especially as ALW himself worked on this album. 5 out of 5, for the angelic vocals and the genius selecting of songs.
Not her best album - despite its 'striking' artwork, but has some gems on it.
Some beautifully sung songs here, and ones that utilise Brightman's voice to the best of her ability - the soprano one that is, such as that clearly accomplished in the latter half of 'Unexpected Song' and 'Chanson D'Enfrance'. This is something Sarah does not do enough of, and as a consequence her album releases can be somewhat frustrating at times. She often sings the wrong songs that do not always impress, and do not always do her the natural justice of the soprano she is and deserves to be.
There are also some oddities here, and so the album is aptly titled. I never understood or liked the Show 'Cats', and got bored with it halfway through viewing, and so the 'cat' songs we could have done without here in my opinion - they're distinctly out of place, and do not fit into the rest of the selection in any capacity at all - not even with the novel contribution from Sir John Gielgud!
Some songs I just don't care for - others I love. The biggest sore point for me being 'The Music Of The Night', which is not a woman's song, but a very 'erotic' song, full of masculine sexuality, and thus should only be sung by a man - a complete turn-off... (and before you all jump to leave comments - all this political correctness is a lot of nonsense, and that's coming from a 'woman's' point of view!)