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This is Josh Groban's first studio album and is definitely his most classical to date. The album is mostly foreign language, with a mix of French, Italian and Spanish. There are also a few English songs. However, it is my opinion that the foreign language are the stronger songs on this album, with the possible exception of 'Let Me Fall' which is a beautiful haunting song.
My favourites of the foreign language songs are 'Alla Luce Del Sole' and 'Gira Con Me', which Josh sings with fluency and style.
On this album he also duets with Andrea Corr (of 'The Corrs') and with Charlotte Church (when she was still a classical music singer.
His strong baritone really shines with this classical sound and demonstrates just why he gained such a strong following so early on in his career. To many, this album is 'Classic Josh'. However, he has really developed since this album came out and I would recommend starting with his later albums if you are new to his music.
I HAVE THE X FACTOR!! At least that's what i think!
I recently bought AWAKE by Josh Groban after being bombarded by his music on Radio 2! Yes i listen to Radio 2. I travel about a 1000 miles a week for work and have a secret ambition to be a mini cab driver. In my experience that is the station of choice!
I have just returned from a 4 hour journey back from Nottingham this evening and bombarded myself with the Joshmeister since getting stuck in a stack of traffic on the M1.
What a fantastic album. I have never sung so much and so loudly in my life. For anyone stuck next to some idiot shouting at the top of their lungs in a black mondeo.....that was me!!!
It is a fantastic mix of classical style music bringing this genre into the mainstream. There are a couple on there you will probably all know or recognise such as You are loved (don't give up) and February Song. There is also a bonus track on the album of You Raise Me Up (the song that Westlife murdered!) There are a few songs in Italian which i don't understand but still love to listen to and even a couple of colaborations with Ladysmith Black Mambazo (remember them?!)
Have a good look at his site which spookily enough is www.joshgroban.com
It is not the sort of music i would normally listen to, but am now happy to add him (on a semi permanent basis at least) to my 6 cd multichanger. I challenge anyone (except chavs) to listen to this musical masterpiece and not think after the second time through that they good enough to win X factor. Crank up the volume and sing a long and no matter how terrible you actually sound you will in fact think that you are on a par with Josh.
He is that good he can carry a tone deaf monotone like myself!
A+ for effort Josh. I will definitely be looking out for your next album.
Simon, Sharon and Louis see you at the next X factor auditions. To everyone reading this i will see you in the X Factor bloopers show!
Josh Groban began his career in 2001 with his debut self titled album. Id never heard of him until nearer his 2004 release Closer but from that album, I had to return to see what I had missed out on. Josh has simply a classical style to his music which narrows his market but working along side some really big names did help him on his path to success. His second album differs slightly from his first and I have to say I still prefer Closer to Josh Groban.
I saw him on his Ally McBeal performance which brought the cast to tears and this album has the same impact. Josh played a choir singer who had to sing in front of his class mates which really isnt easy but it got him noticed in the world helping to launch this album. He sang Youre Still You and he was only 17 in 1999 when he was duetting with Celine Dion!
The CD from its booklet is very subtle and doesnt give a lot away. His curly hair, his deep brown eyes and his name. The track titles on the back of the CD give a much better indication of what is to come: the names of Charlotte Church, The Corrs, Lili Hayden to well known tracks like Vincent (starry, starry night). I think that was actually the only one I knew.
For those of you that have heard of Josh, you will know that he sings in my different languages which is another difficulty and something which may put many people off the albums. This one contains six of the thirteen tracks in Italian and the booklet insert does not contain any lyrics. I know no Italian and although I love to learn languages it is impossible without knowing the words! Luckily they can be easily found on the internet.
1. Alla luche del sole
2. Gira con me questa notte
3. Youre still you
4. Cinema paradiso (se)
5. To where you are
7. Canto alla vita featuring The Corrs
8. Let me fall (from Cirque du Soleil)
9. Vincent (starry, starry night)
10. Un amore per semore
11. Home to stay
12. Jesu, joy of mans desiring featuring Lili Hayden
13. The prayer with Charlotte church
Starting with my favourite track because that is the one I listen to over and over is Home to Stay. Its a sad love song. A female with strong will power has gone to find her dream but this lonesome male will pick up the pieces when the dream has been fulfilled. Its a really nice track just to listen to without thinking about the meaning of the words. One that could certainly send me to sleep or just help relaxes. The introduction could easily lead me into Mi Mancherai from the next album but gladly is in English. The orchestra is very complementary and just gives such a soothing feel to the whole track but of course Joshs clear powerful vocals are a perfect match.
To link with the previous track, Id have to mention Youre Still You. The language is the same (English), the styles are similar ballads - but this track increases in tempo a little and Josh sings his heart out. Its quite emotional hearing him. To Where You Are reminds me more of his style in his second album with him accomplishing every note with sensation it seems to be a perfect word to climax on smile. The tempo slows down a lot for Let Me Fall and I almost feel he is going to start singing Per Te from his second album. There is a great solo where the music stops for a few seconds and Josh continues to sing.
Vincent is a big improvement to its original. OK, so I would say that if Josh is singing it but how could you resist it? Its gentle. The syntheses and guitars along with the orchestra are perfect. Josh pronounces every word with perfection too that could get annoying if it was someone speaking. I have to say I havent really liked Charlotte Church in the past so hearing track 13 was something very different. She seems to have lost the strength in her voice and its less defined. The duet is actually rather good Charlotte and Josh singing in both English and Italian. Think of Disneys Aladdin and Jasmine singing but with a little more operatic style and you have the song.
Tracks like song 12, remind me of something that could be heard in a church - a choir singing in the background. Lili has great violinist skills as well as backing vocals to Josh. She seems to be a little drowned out as Josh overpowers her.
The Italian tracks are inspiring. I really have no idea about what is being said but Im really not concerned! The voice, the orchestras, the styles just let my imagination run wild what could be happening? In particular track 10 is very moving. Its very strong but passionate. The opening track reminds me of a jungle type track with an orchestra.
I couldnt review the album without mentioning The Corrs as featured in track seven. Its more techno and upbeat that the rest of the album so it sticks out. The track is in Italian but The Corrs come in with English lyrics before joining Josh in Italian. I only have one of their albums Talk on Corners but if you liked them in that album, you will love them in this. This is perhaps one of the tracks that seem a little out of place but it shows Josh in a slightly different style.
Overall I have to say this isnt my favourite album and I would rather play Closer but the English tracks are amazing. Its an album which is very different to the rest of my music collection and although Josh is still the only male in there, I only play this one occasionally now. Funnily enough Josh thanks Lara Fabian in this album as she helped him but not in the second where he covers one of her songs. He also doesnt thank Charlotte but there is a long list of people that helped him. If you love classical music with a powerful male vocal then this album is perfect. I didnt let Charlotte Church put me off the album and was surprised to find I liked it.
Price: Only £5.97 from Amazon.co.uk ('Closer' is £10.99)