A Missed Opportunity
Even as a non-composer I've often imagined how classic Carpenters tunes might sound with more contemporary and complex orchestral arrangements. Maybe Mr. Carpenter though his originals couldn't be improved upon or he just couldn't stretch his imagination too far from the familar, but there's not a lot new going on here. Curiously, the old studio tracks sound crisp while the overdubbed Philharmonic elements are rather dull and seem far in the background. The new drum tracks, in particular, are lost in the mud. The main difference between these and the studio tracks is the studio strings have been swapped for the Philharmonic with little alternation. For hardcore Carpenters fans or even people who admire Karen's unique talent, there are moments worth a listen but I doubt the casual Carpenters listener would discern any difference from the original recordings. In hindsight it would have been more interesting to give a contemporary power ballad arranger Karen's lead vocals to create something that sounds familiar yet contemporary and dramatic. Sadly, that didn't happen here.
Take the perfect and beautiful voice, add The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra with brother Richard's genius and you have it all! This is an "epic" album that will leave you smiling! It's a step that most groups don't take but on December 7th, The Carpenters will reveal this huge orchestra with sound from the amazing Carpenters! Enjoy this as this is the last real genious you will ever hear from Karen and Richard Carpenter! ENJOY! 12/2018 WoW!
Thank you Richard C. !!
By Best Generation
I must admit when the Carpenters were first out and making hits I could not admit to friends that I loved their music. It was a little out of style if you were a rock and roll fan like myself. But when I hear Karen and Richard now it brings nothing but good memories flooding back. Richard's arraingments and musical genius is on full display again. Karen got most of the attention but Richard really deserves a lot more credit than he ever received. This collection is fun to listen to and should be part of your collection.
Let Q have a go at it
My initial joy at seeing a new release was quickly quashed after realizing nothing changed. My wish is that someone would buy the rights to Karen’s vocal tracks and deconstruct the overproduction and background vocals. I would love to hear all her vocals with minimal instrumentation and NOTHING ELSE! Let Quincy have a go at it. Her solo album is my favorite so he might be the perfect person to unleash the magic that is Karen’s voice.
Iconic Songs in Thier Fully Realized Splendor
This is a lovely tribute to one the finest pop vocalists and one of the best musical teams of the 20th Century. It's pristine Carpenters. After all the orchestra has had more than 40 years to perfect their performance. Not a single note is out of place and yet nothing feels strained or contrived - not even the electric guitar solo in Goodbye to Love. It's timeliness, yet still a ride in the way, way back machine. Thank you Richard for taking these original recordings to the absolute highest level possible. It is your and Karen's rightful legacy of song.
Just Pure Sweetness!!
By The 70's LIVE!!
First off congratulations and THANK YOU Richard Carpenter for keeping Karen’s memory alive!!!! Her velvety voice puts me back in a time where all had to worry about was borrowing my dad’s Impala and picking up my girl. This album I can listen to all night and drift away!!!
Karen’s irreplaceable voice surrounded and now lifted by Richards perfection making talents. Will be. Sure to give you goosebumps. Some, as RC has said, are definitely “chill factor songs.”
A MUST HAVE
from Leon Russell, despite ruining the song.
This is possibly the best rearrangement of The Carpenters’ music yet!! Ignore everyone who says,”what’s the difference?” There are so many great and new musical additions and the strength of Karen’s voice is like never before. It’s like I get to relive discovering The Carpenters for the first time all over again. Richard Carpenter is truly a genius.
I got chills
Karens voice comes though very strong and the new arragements are wonderful! I'm so glad I ordered it. I have been a fan since I was a preteen (long time ago) and to this day Karen still gives me chills when I hear her sing. Great job Richard Carpenter!!!!!