A little late for a review of Frankie's new Christmas album, but this CD of all-new recordings was quite a surprise. Released on Rhino and comprising 13 tracks, it's great value and it's also a great record.
Although some don't like the fact that Frankie's 82-year-old voice doesn't have the raw power it did some years ago, it's still pretty damn good. I can listen to this and just really enjoy it, without any need to over-analyse it. Highlights for me are "Merry Christmas, Baby", featurng Jeff beck on guitar, and "What are you doing New Year's Eve", but to be honest I enjoy them all....except, "Frosty the Snowman", which has to be the most annoying Christmas song ever. It's even more annoying because the tune lingers in the mind, and lingers, and lingers......
Frankie bravely tackles songs he has recorded before, such as "The Christmas Song", hear previously on The Fours Seasons Christmas Album, originally called Seasons greetings and released in 1963. The two treatments are similar, but the falsetto excursions are dropped, and the arrangement is probably rather better. In fact, throughout the CD the arrangements are stellar.
It's really great music.
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