Sunday, September 29, 2013
First Date, the new musical comedy currently running on Broadway and featuring stars Krysta Rodriguez and Zachary Levi in the lead roles, is one of those shows that has completely divided critics and audiences. Critics have generally slammed the show, with a few exceptions, while audiences have been going crazy over it.
I'm going to assume that this is a show you really have to see to appreciate, because nothing that audiences seem to be so excited over comes across on this recording, produced by the great new Yellow Sound Label. All this recording amounts to is a bunch forgettable pop-rock songs filled with try-hard comedy consisting of clichés and stereotypes. Again, this is only going off the recording. This is by no means an immortalization of the entire show, so I'm sure those of us who have only heard the album are missing something. I have no doubt that this show is as funny and enjoyable as audiences are saying. But if it was the intention of this album to capture that spirit, it hasn't quite succeeded.
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Well, I'll put it this way: Do not expect this album to replace the original cast recording with Butz and Scott. It simply doesn't. But is it an excellent companion, especially for fans of the show? Oh god yes.
Saturday, September 7, 2013
To many, he's the heartthrob of the Great White Way, climbing to fame after he thrilled audiences in the emotionally exhausting rock musical Next to Normal... but he really became known when he appeared as Enjolras in the film adaptation of Les Miserables. With boyish good looks, a killer charm, and a tenor voice you could listen to endlessly, people love him... and it's not hard to see why.
This album, a record of Tveit's concert at Broadway's popular cabaret nightclub 54 Below, just happened to be released at the exact same time as Laura Benanti's 54 Below album, both produced by the wonderful Broadway Records ( I review Benanti's album here). And with Ms. Benanti's stunning and brilliantly fun recording getting so much buzz, I truly hope Tveit's album gets just as much.
For those of us who live such a great distance away from New York City, the up-and-coming label Broadway Records has taken the liberty of immortalizing some of the best and most exciting of these concerts for the rest of the world to hear. Current recordings include concerts by Norbert Leo Butz, Patti LuPone, Christiane Noll, Aaron Tveit, and Andrea McArdle... but easily one of the most anticipated releases was of Laura Benanti's concert. It's here now. And to say it doesn't disappoint would be a severe understatement.