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The Movie Songbook Enhanced

3.6 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Enhanced, 1 Mar 2010
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Amazon's Sharleen Spiteri Store

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Product details

  • Audio CD (1 Mar. 2010)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Enhanced
  • Label: Mercury
  • ASIN: B0031RG4Q8
  • Other Editions: Audio CD |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars 42 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 64,771 in CDs & Vinyl (See Top 100 in CDs & Vinyl)
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Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Xanadu
  2. If I Can't Have You
  3. God Bless The Child
  4. Between The Bars
  5. The Sound Of Silence
  6. What's New Pussycat?
  7. The Windmills Of Your Mind
  8. Take Me With You
  9. Cat People (Putting Out Fire)
  10. Many Rivers To Cross
  11. Oh, Pretty Woman
  12. This One's From The Heart
  13. Take My Breath Away
  14. The Movie Song Book

Product description

Product Description

The Movie Songbook is the follow up to Sharleen Spiteri's top three debut solo album Melody, and the ninth studio album from a 21 year recording career. A collection of Sharleen’s favourite soundtracks, the album is a musical journey from pop to country via disco, bossa-nova, folk, rockabilly and jazz. Phil Ramone (who has produced various Hollywood legends from Marilyn Monroe to Frank Sinatra via Liza Minnelli and Barbra Streisand) is on production duties for the album , which includes "God Bless The Child",  "Xanadu", "Cat People (Putting Out Fire)" and "The Sound Of Silence".

BBC Review

Fresh from the commercial success of Melody, her debut solo offering in 2008, Sharleen Spiteri steps away from 60s pastiche to root herself solidly in the middle of the road with a baker’s dozen-worth of never more than passable covers aimed squarely at Radio 2.

The Movie Songbook is hardly a cutting-edge idea, more a blunt re-hashing of a disparate collection of songs strung together by the mere coincidence of having featured on a film soundtrack. Agreeably enough, Spiteri doesn’t always opt for the obvious choice, but she never seems completely certain of how to make the material her own. The production – shared by the singer with Phil Ramone and Texas bandmate Johnny McElhone – echoes the uncertainty, pulling in every direction it can and on too many occasions all at once.

When Spiteri stays closest to the original – as with Jeff Lynne’s bright, buoyant Xanadu and the Bee Gees’ anthemic jeremiad If I Can’t Have You – the results are enjoyable enough. But that’s before you encounter the spectacularly misconceived cover of Billie Holiday’s God Bless the Child (Spiteri bizarrely pitching it as a seductive torch song), the unconvincing, rockabilly-laced Cat People (Putting Out Fire), and a strung-out and strangulated This One’s From the Heart that Tom Waits himself would struggle to recognise as his own.

Ramone’s fingerprints are all over a brooding Sound of Silence and a brassy What’s New Pussycat?, both of which benefit from vocal performances unhindered by Spiteri’s well-intentioned but otherwise woefully executed urge to ‘characterise’ songs. Straining for effect in Jimmy Cliff’s Many Rivers to Cross, she rapidly descends into an unintelligible whole as the airbrushed production goes doodling off on its own.

Perhaps it just seems worse than it is because it’s not as good as it could have been. Or perhaps it’s because this is material that makes too many demands of a voice with a narrow range and a tendency to clot and congeal. --Michael Quinn

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