Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
A nice change of pace
Dave Mock | Rockville Centre, New York United States | 08/24/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Bert Kaempfert's "Yesterday and Today" proves that the glorious "Wall of Sound" concept wasn't the sole province of Phil Spector. It also proves that the arranger of string-soaked ballads and playful horn tracks knew how to depart from his usual style...while making it a perfect fit.This is a reissue of the original 1973 Polydor set, released by Polydor/Decca's sibling MCA in the US as "Fabulous Fifties...And New Delights". Six of the 12 tracks from the original album -- there are also four bonus tracks from Kaempfert's later "Gallery" album -- are Fifties gems, with the other half Kaempfert/Herbert Rehbein originals. Thanks to the strings, "Blueberry Hill" becomes a lush, well-arranged ballad, but retains its blues roots. "Love Me Tender" becomes even more romantic than in the Elvis Presley version. And even when Kaempfert keeps close to the original arrangement -- as in Duane Eddy and Lee Hazelwood's "Rebel Rouser -- " the extra horns that Kaempfert brings to the song work well. Kaempfert's take on "Night Train" starts out as a relaxed arrangement. Forty seconds into the song, though, those saxes and low horns kick in and push the song forward very nicely. In fact, when the original album came out, I always thought of it as the highlight of the set -- until I bought the CD version and rediscovered some gorgeous Kaempfert/Rehbein originals. "I Will Never Stop Loving You" is a moving late-60s early-70s melody with a lush blend of horns, guitars and background vocals in the middle.There's only one clunker in the album, and surprisingly it's a Kaempfert/Rehbein tune -- "I Remember Loving You." The repetitiveness of the song makes it a snoozer, and it's not even a Kaempfert/Rehbein original in the technical sense -- the melody comes from the "Can Can" melody by Jacques Offenbach. Otherwise, "Yesterday and Today" is a solid collection."
Not what I had expected...
Dave Mock | 01/10/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Bert Kaempfert never made a bad record. Just a few that were different. This is one of them. Recorded in November,'72, slightly less than a year after the dynamic "Six Plus Six", I thought at the time (age 14) I knew what was coming. What we got was a curve ball named "Fabulous Fifties... and New Delight". Bert's first LP on MCA Records, which appeared in April, '73. Nothing like what came before it, known as "Yesterday & Today" in the rest of the world is an album that succeeds on it's own merits. On one hand entirely contemporary and on the other and dive back to the music that Bert was hearing before he cranked up his own band. A curious blend of sounds and engineering effects (like the begining of Duane Eddy's "Rebel-'Rouser") and some straight-ahead modern big-band blare ("Children Of Peace"). This album is worth the price for the fantastic cover of "Night Train" that has shown up on a few BK compilations, but has never sounded better than this particular mastering. Peter Klemt remastered the Good Life Music series, and you can hear the care that went into each album. All of Bert's LP's sounded wonderful (expensive German microphones) and every CD has such depth and nuance, dynamics that the poor LP just couldn't reproduce. One of the few albums not produced by Milt Gabler. Bonus tracks inclued some hints from '74's great "Gallery" LP. Joe Bob says Check It Out, but that's what I say about all of 'em."