Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Elmer Bernstein, Conrad Salinger, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra|
A Musical Spectacular: Songs from the Classic MGM Musicals
Genres: Classical, Broadway & Vocalists
Gene DeSantis | Philadelphia, PA United States | 08/26/2007
(2 out of 5 stars)
"This album is summed up by the liner booklet picture of a decidedly middle-aged and very frumpy Elmer Bernstein conducting in a "Heavy Metal" t-shirt. Perhaps Bernstein's sloppy bombast (augmented with a thick reverb and Christopher Palmer's guesswork "reconstructions") was apt for the many hack productions of his too-prodigious career, but not for Conrad Salinger, who demands the most refined touch and got it from the likes of Saul Chaplin and André Previn. The reason this album existed at all was that Sony Music's custom unit (then strangely called CBS Special Products) was making hash of the old MGM soundtracks, using video masters and inept engineering of its own; at Ted Turner's angry prodding Time Warner's then record unit started reissuing them from production elements, many in true stereo, and the results were often astonishing. So this item became superfluous -- at best. But Elmer Bernstein wasn't finished; three years after this botch he and Palmer "reconstructed" his undoubted masterpiece "The Magnificent Seven" for a Koch album, the first of two such, and from James Sedares's restrained opening you know you're in for the same thing, if different. And who'd have guessed -- five years later Rykodisc unearthed the original soundtrack music (it's now on Varèse Sarabande), and its bold impassioned conducting (from the same Elmer Bernstein?) put paid to that effort as well. Three albums, then, issued with the best of intent, but with far from the best of results."