Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
A neglected MGM musical in a glorious, stereo soundtrack CD
Alan A. Pereira | superior, co United States | 12/31/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"MGM's Athena is an offbeat musical that has developed something of a cult following in recent years. The cast is attractive and talented, with a notable appearance by 1950 Mr. Universe champion Steve Reeves. Today's audiences can probably relate more easily to the topics of health food fads, body building, and astrology than audiences did at the time of the film's release in 1954. Next time it's shown on Turner Classic Movies, in a superior widescreen transfer, don't miss it!
The original song score by Hugh Martin and Ralph Blane is one of the best from the 1950s. "Love Can Change the Stars" is truly a neglected gem and can easily take its place among the the most popular standards of the 20th Century. The soundtrack CD on Rhino Handmade, presented in (glorious) stereo for the first time, is a treasure for fans and should bring in a fair share of converts to the talents of Martin and Blane.
Vic Damone sings like a god, quite justifying Frank Sinatra's appraisal of him as a crooner with "the best pipes in the business." Damone opens the score with "The Girl Next Door," a reworking of "The Boy Next Door," introduced by Judy Garland as "The Boy Next Door" in Meet Me in St. Louis. Jane Powell sounds as clear as a bell and is the other chief asset of this recording. The movie outtakes featured on the CD are also a treat. Damone sings "Faster than Sound," a terrific song that was later to appear in the 1963 Broadway musical "High Spirits." The demo recordings on the CD are also a delight, as Blane was actually a very engaging singer.
Athena is one of Rhino Handmade's most unlikely releases, but lovers of old musicals should be utterly enchanted by it.