Total "ear candy" from Mercurio and Giordani
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Hot in the heels of "Tenor Arias" comes "Sicili Bella" - a complete CD with Mercurio orchestration, arrangements and conducting Giordani on this CD of Sicilian songs. And what a CD it is! The music and voice seduces you from the first to the last note! Girodani's stunning voice is like honey to your ears and Mercurio's outstanding orchestration/arrangements add the whipped cream.I have not stopped listening to this CD since it arrived yesterday. Especially I simply love the first track (Già il sole dal gange) and track 6 (Amorosi miei giorni). And his rendition of Vaghissima sembianza gave me goosebumps up and down my spine! But the bonus tracks on this CD is a real treat - listen and you will know why!If you want some serious "ear candy" then this CD is a MUST for any lover of music!As Maestro Mercurio states in the booklet: "It is my great pleasure to bring forth these wonderful pieces that illuminate the touchingly expressive Sicilian heritage". My reply is: Thank you for bringing it to us - MORE, MORE, MORE - please!!!"
A surprise package of songs old and new...
Laurie Eckhout | Juneau, AK USA | 02/14/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Other than knowing Giordani has a magnificent voice and that Mercurio and his baton can work magic with an orchestra, I did not know what to expect from this Sicilian songbook. Gone was the familiarity of those famous arias, torn out of famous operas. Alas, this CD is a delightful, concerted effort to pay homage to the land, the music and the voice that is Sicilia. The great talent of its "bedda vuci" tenor and the arrangements of Maestro Mercurio so beautifully present these works, it's destined to become a classic.Comments on some favorite tracks:To my ears, Track 1 is surprisingly Baroque in nature. It stands alone in this aspect. Track 2 draws you into its dramatic scheme right off with haunting music. Throughout this piece, the vocal range of sweetness and sorrow match perfectly with the music. This is one of my favorites on the CD. Capturing a forlorn emotion without being gratuitous.Track 6. This is a shining example of the talents of Maestro Mercurio. His arrangements float cloud-like on their own and around Giordani's vocals. This is why this CD's emphasis is not just on the tenor, but the conductor, orchestrator and arranger Steven Mercurio, who according to the insert, also dreamed up this project. He and Giordani are a 'dream-team' on this CD.Track 8. Its sound is so exotic. With spiraling voice and a sense of tension created by the orchestrations, this couldn't be improved unless it was simply longer. Track 12. Definitely more modern in sound, with lilting voice and music along with dramatic crescendos that will leave you toe-tapping. This is a really fun piece. Giordani is a delight, as is the music.ALL the tracks are wonderful. Mercurio and Giordani teamed up for "Tenor Arias," also recently released, with just as successful results. I highly recommend both titles. ciao, Laurie"