Roy S. from CAMBRIDGE, MA Reviewed on 3/21/2007...
Barbra's star twinkles and shines !!!
Matthew G. Sherwin | last seen screaming at Amazon customer service | 06/21/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Memories is one of Barbra Streisand's better albums out there and when you hear the songs you'll be certain to agree with me! The quality of the sound is very, very good; and that artwork faithfully re-creates the artwork of the record album jacket.
"Memory" starts the CD with this stunning song from the Broadway musical entitled Cats; Barbra makes this all her own with her uncanny sense of timing. Barbra's excellent diction also enhances her performance and as Barbra plays with both the tempo and the keys a little she truly does make this ballad her own--great! "Memory" is a fine song and it makes a strong beginning for this album. Listen also for Barbra Streisand to do an excellent duet with Neil Diamond on "You Don't Bring Me Flowers;" "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" is one of Barbra's best duets ever and Neil Diamond also gets to show off the operatic qualities of his voice. Neil and Barbra sound very well together, each voice complementing the other flawlessly; and their timing is excellent. "You Don't Bring Me Flowers" is truly a major highlight of this album.
"My Heart Belongs To Me" is another very beautiful ballad that boasts a lush musical arrangement; and the backup singers do a fine job of harmonizing without ever missing a beat! "My Heart Belongs To Me" shines like silver and gold out together and I really like this number whenever I hear it. It's rare that I enjoy such a sensitive ballad. In addition, Barbra sings one of Billy Joel's signature songs with panache; "New York State Of Mind" really impresses me; as a native New Yorker who lived many years in the five boroughs of New York City this tune certainly brings back many fond memories of me going around the city and marveling at the sites there. When I hear this song I remember walking down Fifth Avenue at Christmastime, The Mets, The Yankees and seeing Wall Street traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange--and so much more.
"No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)" has Barbra doing another smashing duet with the great Donna Summer. "No More Tears (Enough Is Enough)" is the album version; there is, by the way, a longer version but we don't get that here. This duet is positively electric and it leaves you wanting so much more.
And more is precisely what you're going to get. "Evergreen" is a song that won an Oscar for Barbra when she sang this in her version of "A Star Is Born." "Evergreen" features Barbra squarely front and center--and that's right where she belongs! "Evergreen" stuns me with its beauty and I could never tire of hearing Streisand sing this tune.
"The Love Inside" gives us another sensitive song; Barbra aces this easily--even though we know it really wasn't as easy as Barbra makes it look. The CD ends well with Barbra Streisand performing "The Way We Were" from the movie of the same name. "The Way We Were" is quite insightful and I think this makes the perfect ending to this exceptional CD.
Barbra Streisand was one of the very few true divas we've ever seen; and we are better off for her sharing her talents with us. Streisand fans will consider this a must-have for their collections; and people who enjoy contemporary pop vocals will cherish this album as well. "
A rehash, but a good rehash.
Robert Johnson | Richmond, KY USA | 06/10/2003
(3 out of 5 stars)
"All of the songs on MEMORIES, a love song compilation, are first-rate, however there seems to be little reason why any fan would need to own it now. Barbra had won over a whole new legion of pop fans with the phenomenal success of 1980's GUILTY, but was working on the film YENTL full time by 1981 and didn't have time to record a follow up release. Columbia wanted to release something, so they decided to release a basically revamped version of the multi-platinum GREATEST HITS, VOLUME TWO, and get Barbra in the studio to record two new songs to reel in her long time fans.
The strategy worked: MEMORIES hit the Top Ten and reached Quintuple Platinum status in sales, but it irritated her longtime fans who had to buy material they already owned on other albums just to get the new songs. For the record, the two new tracks both rank among her finest work. The hit single "Comin' In and Out Of Your Life" (#11 Pop, #2 Adult Contemporary) is a sentimental classic, and Barbra's stunning rendition of "Memory" is the definitive recording of the phenomenal CATS theme. Also, MEMORIES does spotlight a couple terrific album tracks ("New York State Of Mind," "The Love Inside") that causal fans may not have been familiar with, and contains a previously unreleased solo recording of "Lost Inside Of You," which is superior to the original duet version from the A STAR IS BORN soundtrack.
But three of these ten tracks were making their third appearance on a Streisand album, and four of the cuts had just been released GREATEST HITS, VOLUME TWO a scant three years before. Now that "Comin' In and Out Of Your Life" and "Memory" are available elsewhere, there is no reason that anyone but the most casual of fans would need to own this album. The material is great and the photos of the front and back covers are beautiful, but you can basically find everything here on other albums that provide a better value."
Good, but GREATEST HITS 1 & 2 are much better!
L. H | 02/05/1999
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I'm a big Barbra Streisand fan but I must say that MEMORIES is a rehash. Don't get me wrong, the songs are great, but numerous songs are available on many other Streisand albums. There are a few newly recorded songs. "Memory" and "Comin' In and Out of Your Life" both made their first appearences on this album, but are also availiable on the much better A COLLECTION: GREATEST HITS . . . AND MORE. That leaves "New York State of Mind" and the solo version of "Lost Inside of You" (formerly a duet From A STAR IS BORN) as the only two exclusive songs.Is the whole album worth buying for just these two songs? If you are a fanatical Streisand fan (like me) then YES! However, everyone else would be better off buying GREATEST HITS Volumes 1 & 2. Those two albums give a much better presentation of her work."
L. H | Oregon | 07/10/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"There is no one who can compare to this talented singer. She is one of the best natural singers that I have ever heard with a style all of her own. She is simply wonderful. Her songs have such warmth and feeling. The songs on this particular cd are some of her best work."