As a musical fan there really isn’t anything better than sitting down and listening to an album filled with musical songs – a musical sweetshop you could say. Josh Groban’s latest album certainly is that.
From firm favourites such as ‘Bring Him Home’ from Les Miserables and All I ask of You from Phantom of the Opera to lesser known songs (well to me anyway – I’m good but there are still lots of musicals yet to see!) such as ‘Try to Remember’ from The Fantasticks and ‘Finishing the Hat’ from Sunday in the Park with George this is an album that has it all.
The album flows from song to song with ease and really showcases the range of vocals that Groban processes and uses well to hold the listener’s attention throughout the album. This is particularly seen in the contrast between ‘Pure Imagination’ and ‘What I Did for Love’ – the pureness and gentleness of the first track in comparison with the more commanding performance of ‘What I did For Love’ is brilliant and both interpretations work well.
If I have to be completely honest, I was surprised by how great the duet between Groban and Kelly Clarkson was on ‘All I ask of You’. This is my favourite musical duet (even though I have only seen/heard the film version) as well my favourite song from a musical so I was concerned that it might taint it slightly. But I soon changed my mind very quickly and was impressed with the way in which Clarkson was able to sing it in her own unique way but without getting carried away. Her voice worked well with Groban’s.
It is a strong album that is difficult to find fault with and I’m pretty sure that all musical fans will absolutely adore it. However, some might find that it is too much of the same repeated and needs some variety in tempo but for me I felt that it is the closest that we are going to get in getting all the classic musicals onto one album.