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I know I will annoy a few people with this review, but here goes. I just can't get into this soundtrack. it doesn't fit with a CD. I have tried..........really tried to like it but sorry. It's just not happening for me.
It starts promisingly enough with an opening that more than smacks of tunes from 'Jekly and Hyde', 'Miss Saigon' and I am sure 'West Side Story' and 'Les Mis'. All great shows great tunes. The majority of this album is bland and lacks punch. Personally I think this is music that should be heard in the correct venue, i.e at the show in a live environment.
There are two songs that I think work: What is this Feeling? and Defying Gravity. This is down to Kristen Chenoweth and Idina Menzil. These two singers belt out lyrics as though they were simply breathing and in Defying Gravity you can envisgae the on-stage drama and theatrics. I have seen the poster show the Wicked Witch of the West being raised up and I know that she is singing Defying Grvity at this point. The only other two songs worthy of note are Dancing Through Life and For Good at the end.
No, I havenot seen the show and am not likely to unless it tours. Despite my comments I want to see it as I have heard it is truely spectacular. i do not think the CD does it justice. Sadly we have become used to musicals that are sung through and the story is clear. I am guessing there is either a lot of music missed out or their is a fair bit of dialogue in the show.
Sadly, the songs on the CD with the exception of those mentioned do not stand on their own.
This is the soundtrack of brilliant musical Wicked. The show started on Broadway, and is now in theatres all around the world, gaining much success. Like the musical, the soundtrack does not disappoint. The recording is of the original Broadway cast, with the likes of Idina Menzel (Rent, The Wild Party) as Elphaba "Wicked Witch Of the West" and Kristin Chenoweth (Pushing Daisies, You're A Good Man Charlie Brown) as Glinda "The Good". Both put in amazing performances on stage, and on the most part this soundtrack does them justice. Having said this, it doesn't seem to quite capture the electric feeling they create in a live performance - though can a soundtrack ever? The rest of the cast and ensemble are similarly good.
Highlights include the most famous song, Defying Gravity and the end duet between the two witches, For Good. Songs such as Popular and What Is This Feeling which are some of the highlights onstage loose their comedic impact somewhat without the performance alongside vocals. This, however, is only to be expected due to the nature of a soundtrack. The one thing I would add to the CD is the number Wicked Witch of the East, sung by Michelle Federer in the original cast, which is sadly missing.
Overall I would highly recommend this soundtrack, particularly if you have seen and enjoyed Wicked on stage. And if you haven't already seen it, then buy the album and be inspired to go and see the show. If you enjoy musicals you won't be disappointed.
Wicked is one of the more modern stage productions to his theatres across the world. My wife and I went to see it in 2007 for our wedding anniversary, and bought the CD immediately afterwards, it was so good. It is a musical, and this CD features the original Broadway cast in the recording.
Wicked takes on the story of The Wizard of Oz and gives it a bit of a twist, focusing on the innocence of the so-called Wicked Witch and making her out to be misinterpreted, following her through life, seeing her through her education years and what takes her to the Emerald City. It's a clever concept and trasnformed magically with some outstanding music.
No One Mourns The Wicked
Dear Old Shiz
The Wizard And I
What Is This Feeling?
Dancing Through Life
I'm Not That Girl
One Short Day
A Sentimental Man
I'm Not That Girl (Reprise)
As Long As You're Mine
No Good Deed
March Of The Witch Hunters
As with most musicals, a lot of these tracks are not traditional tracks you wouls expect on an album release, adopting very much a stage format, with talking and instrumental pieces as the characters move around, and as such some of them make less sense unless you know the story.
However, there are a few tracks here that I found mind-blowing brilliant. The best on the album as far as I'm concerned is Defying Gravity, which showcases the marvellous vocal talents of Idina Menzel as the Wicked Witch learns to fly on her broomstick. The track contains powerful notes and some feel good instrumental accompaniment, as does the phenomenal No Good Deed, an emotional song again for Menzel. Kristin Chenoweth provides strong vocals on defying Gravity and through some of the other tracks, and there are some sound vocal performances on some of the other, less commercial tracks.
As the tracks tell a story, following the stage production, the lyrics form a very important part of the whole production, not just this CD. The frenetic pace of some of the tracks, such as Dancing Through Life, and elements of March Of The Witch Hunters, add a bit of welcome tension as you get the true feeling of being present at a production with this combination of tracks.
Overall, the vocals and song writing showcased here is phenomenal. There are some elements of some of the main songs that send shivers down my spine, and this to me is the mark of a good musical, and this CD is one that is played on a regular basis in our house and car, and is one I recommend getting. The CD is readily available online, and is available from amazon.co.uk for £7.99.
"Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 No One Mourns The Wicked - Kristin Chenoweth, Sean McCourt, Cristy Candler, Jan Neuberger
2 Dear Old Shiz - Kristin Chenoweth
3 The Wizard And I - Carole Shelley, Idina Menzel
4 What Is This Feeling? - Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel
5 Something Bad - William Youmans, Idina Menzel
6 Dancing Through Life - Norbert Leo Butz, Kristin Chenoweth, Christopher Fitzgerald, Michelle Federer, Idina Menzel
7 Popular - Kristin Chenoweth
8 I'm Not That Girl - Idina Menzel
9 One Short Day - Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel
10 A Sentimental Man - Joel Grey
11 Defying Gravity - Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel
12 Thank Goodness - Kristin Chenoweth, Carole Shelley
13 Wonderful - Joel Grey, Idina Menzel
14 I'm Not That Girl (Reprise) - Kristin Chenoweth
15 As Long As You're Mine - Idina Menzel, Leo Norbert Butz
16 No Good Deed - Idina Menzel
17 March Of The Witch Hunters - Christopher Fitzgerald
18 For Good - Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel
19 Finale ""Wicked"" - Kristin Chenoweth, Idina Menzel"