Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Andrew Lloyd Webber, O.L.C., Tim Rice|
Jesus Christ Superstar: The 20th Anniversary London Cast Recording
Genres: Pop, Soundtracks, Broadway & Vocalists
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Not bad, but by far not the best
Jacob A. Davis | Louisville, KY USA | 02/24/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This recording is a good addition to the collection for Jesus Christ Superstar fans. However, although it has its moments, it lacks that certain magic that makes a JCS recording great. The musical arrangement could be better by far, with no songs surpassing the "okay" status and some (like "Simon Zealotes") turning up awful. Most of the cast is good, especially Claire Moore who is hands down the best Mary Magdelene since Yvonne Elliman, possibly even better than her. She is the best reason to buy this CD. Keith Burns is a good Judas (though there is nothing really special about his performance) and Jeff Shankly is a good Pilate. They are both frankly doing too much of what we've seen before, however (Shankly is practically doing a Barry Dennen impersonation and it shows).
The dissapointments of this album are Paul Nicholas's performance of Jesus (which always sounds as if someone has just gave him a jab to the stomach) and the performances of Gary Martin and Bogdan Kominowski as Caiaphas and Annas (Gary Martin has great bass but sounds as if he is coughing up a loogie and Kominowski does a bad Brian Keith impression). The most interesting part of the recording is the new version of "Could We Start Again, Please". The new lyrics by Tim Rice and the surprisingly terrific pop vocals by Paul (the only moment where he shines in this) and Claire are amazing and you can almost picture Christ rising to the heavens to the Superstar fanfare at the end."
nicknamenotinuse | Washington state, United States | 06/19/2002
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Here's my take on the major parts of this recording:Jesus: I disagree with some of the other reviews about Paul Nicholas' performance. I actually think he has a great voice for Jesus- it's got a strong baritone component that more than matches up with Judas ( a complaint about some Jesuses in JCS recordings is that they wilt or whine against the power and emotion of their Judas counterparts- read: Steve Balsamo or Ted Neely). Nicholas doesn't overdo it, just sings the part with the right level of power and emotion. Thinking of a 40ish/50ish Jesus however does lessen the appeal however.
Judas: Not bad, but not the most powerful by any means. Lacks soul, doesn't "go for it" enough. Picks a the easier lower octave too often, like in "Strange Thing Mystifying"- really ruins that number's potential. When he does express emotion, it sounds too often like he is expressing phlegm- must be an effort to squeeze out soul that isn't there. But he is better than some I've heard- he has his moments. Ranks below Carl Anderson and Murray Head, but overall has the right tonal quality and range.Mary Magdalene: Very good, possibly the best.Caiphas and Annas: Probably the best yet.Simon Zealotes: Disagree with some of the other reviewers that this version stinks. I thought Simon had a great range and emotion, and the "soul girls"- "Christ you know I love you, did you see..." sound fantastic.Pilate: Flat out excellentHerod: Charming and fine, but not strikingly memorable.Instrumental: Mixed WAAAYYY too soft in this recording- can often barely hear it. Sometimes lacks the necessary funk, but other times is surprisingly funky. I really wish "Heaven on Their Minds" and "Damned for All Time" would have rocked a little more, but then again other tracks like "What's the Buzz" are pretty darn hoppin' amongst the world of JCS recordings.Overall: A good rendition of the original that doesn't stray too far from it. Worth it for the performances of Caiphas and Annas, Jesus, Pilate, and Mary M. But probably the 1996 London recording or the original 1970 recording would be a better 1st buy."
A smooth take.
Edwin Baeyens | Deurne, Antwerpen Belgium | 02/10/2001
(3 out of 5 stars)
"This is the version that takes the rock out of the rock opera. Paul Nicholas (Jesus) has a nice voice, but he isn't a rock singer and this part really needs one. He can't reach the high notes and falls rather flat on some crucial passages. I quite like Keith Burns as Judas and Claire moore as Mary. Victor Spinetti's Herod is very amusing. But most of the other singers seem to lack the passion that is required (listen to the lifeless 'Pilate's Dream' and 'Simon Zealotes').There are much better versions of Jesus Christ Superstar, but musical lovers who aren't too fond of rock music might prefer this smooth take."