Title - 'Alfie' (Decca)
Artist - Alfie Boe
After the tremendous success of his first Decca album, Bring Him Home last year, critically acclaimed tenor and theater star, Alfie Boe, returns with the release of his eagerly-awaited follow-up, simply titled Alfie
Alfie presents a collection of the most beautiful and timeless songs, sung just the way you want to hear them. The album includes Alfie's renditions of beautiful tunes and songs, show tunes and standards, that he makes his own in his beautifully rich tenor voice and communicative singing.
The album kicks off with 'Being Alive,' from 'Company'. It is a beautiful builder of a song, that allows the man to bring us his depth of vocals from the off. That is followed by the classic 'Maria,' (of course from 'West Side Story'), a song that really doesn't deflect much from the way it's always been sung. But, the same cannot be said for the next track, the always-wonderful-to-hear 'When I Fall In Love.' Alfie's take on the Nat King Cole classic is to bring it more to life as a tale of hope than I've heard in a long, long time.
The lovely 'The First Time Ever I Saw Your Face' is another put-to-the-sword standard that he admirably manages to bring some more previously-unheard tone to, with the beautiful 'Song To The Siren' next. Featuring an inspired turn from the legend Robert Plant, it has to be said that he is barely recognizable from his throaty Zeppelin days. That is followed by both 'When You Wish Upon A Star' (from Disney's film 'Pinocchio') - which I still believe to this day should always be sung by a woman - and the bold orchestra approach to 'Music Of The Night' (from 'Phantom of the Opera') - which, if you listen carefully, at one stage has the very same musical bass line to 'Warm Kitty' (lyrics written by Edith Newlin); a staple bedtime poem from TV's Big Bang Theory! (or is that just me?!)
Next we have 'Somebody To Watch Over Me,' from 'Oh, Kay!' which is followed by the ever-passionate 'In My Daughter's Eyes.' Then comes a standard version of 'Over The Hills And Far Away,' before 'Empty Chairs At Empty Tables' (from 'Les MisÚrables'), featuring Nick Jonas. A song that simply soars from start to finish, it is (for my humble money) the best track on the album. Indeed, it is so empowering, so alive that you half expect a live audience to applaud come its towering end!
'Wheels Of A Dream,' from 'Ragtime' is followed by the reminiscing of 'It Was A Very Good Year,' a heartfelt 'Who Am I,' (both from 'Les MisÚrables'), and finally the passionate plea of his very own 'Bring Him Home.' Often called Britain's favorite tenor, Alfie Boe proves once again that creating a great sounding CD, culled from a great selection of music is never too much trouble to undertake.