MOULIN ROUGE Cast Recording Out Today! - Thoughts

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quizking101
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I just listened to the whole album through and it’s...okay to good. I was definitely mixed on some of the song choices, but it’s overall a pleasant musical diversion. The encore is certainly an odd mish-mash.

Undoubtedly, Karen Olivo walks away with it all with her songs as Satine. “Sparkling Diamonds” wasn’t just a fluke. Her “Firework”, “Come What May”, and “Elephant Love Medley” sections were also beautiful. Tveit, meanwhile, comes off bland at times and it’s hard to hear the chemistry between him and Olivo, especially on the ELM.

Anyone else have thoughts? Share here.

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scripps
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Honestly, I've heard better versions of Tveit singing Roxanne floating around the 'net than what was captured on the OBC. What happened? Very disappointed as that was the only track I was looking forward to.
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bwayphreak234
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I think the entire album is absolutely smashing. It sounds incredible. 

"There’s nothing quite like the power and the passion of Broadway music. "
thedrybandit
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It's recorded well and is a pretty good sounding album. I caught the show earlier in the month, and didn't care for most of it, and that's still the case listening to it. Karen and Tveit do nothing for me live or on the album, and Tveit in particular seems to be even more vocally bland here than he was live.

Shame. It's my favorite movie, and I was hoping at least listening to the album, it might capture that feeling more, but the song choices still just leave me baffled and feeling like the director/writers decided to go for recognizable "OH I know that song" moments rather than songs that help tell the story. I had to skip Firework after the first thirty seconds, and I still laugh when Crazy Rolling starts, because it's so out of place.

 

I will give the recording this - at least Come What May isn't a total riff/belt-off like they were doing when I saw it. That's not to say it's good, but it's marginally better than what they're doing at the Hirschfeld.

And Danny Burstein is of course, the highlight performance of the album.

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CATSNYrevival
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Overall a mixed bag with some enjoyable moments. I love the additional songs for Tam Mutu. Those were all nice. “Firework” is a great performance but I agree with others that it feels a little more out of place than some of the other song choices. The “Elephant Love Medley” is a huge disappointment for me. I like the film version better. It flows much better. The additional songs added for the Broadway version don’t really work for me, but I do enjoy the rest of the album.
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HamilHansen
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Recorded gorgeously with the orchestrations getting a true chance to shine over all the obnoxious cheering/singing along that happens live. Backstage Romance and Come What May are standouts. Burstein is still a marvel despite just hearing his voice, Tveit sounds clean and youthful, and Olivo and Ngaujah come out on top as MVP's for their gorgeous solos. I loved every moment of the show and the album wants me to go back and do that whole thing over again. 

Loved the movie, loved the show, and loved this album. I'm a shameless Bohemian through and through. 

The echo effects and guitar feedback also give it a nice grit and edge.

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CATSNYrevival- The “Elephant Love Medley” is a huge disappointment for me. I like the film version better. 

OMG, I agree.  The new songs and orchestrations don't flow well AT ALL.  The original was perfection and this is just like someone bumped the karaoke machine causing random songs to start playing.

"They're eating her and then they're going to eat me. OH MY GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!!!!" -Troll 2
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QueenAlice
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I listened to the recording at the gym this morning (probably the best environment to hear it) and it basically reaffirms my feelings watching it in the theatre- it plays like those “hooked on classics” tapes we worked out to in the 80s or one of those pop tribute shows on a Princess Cruise. The endless medleys containing forty seconds of every pop song of the last three decades drives me crazy. It’s just overkill.

The voices are of course wonderful.
“I knew who I was this morning, but I've changed a few times since then.”
gray_area
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I thought the album was a tad overproduced? Tried to go a little bit of everything and comes out a bit too much for my liking. I enjoyed the vocals better live, Tveit in particular sounds better live than in this recording. I'm still not a fan of Firework on the show but Olivo knocks that out of the park so I can't hate it as much.

But I agree, this is good music to listen to while at the gym.

Colin852
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Another thread to bash MR. Fun. 

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LoLsmileyFace
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I had no intentions of seeing the show, but thought I would give the music a listen on my way to work.  I was blown away.  Now I need to see it. 

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Does the show open the same way the album does or is there some kind of opening or prologue they didn't record? The opening of the album seems kind of low energy to me. I assumed the opening would be more exciting for this production.

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quizking101
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Colin852 said: "Another thread to bash MR. Fun."

I’ve yet to see a post that bashes the show as a whole. This is to comment on the cast album only, and thus far, everyone seems to be posting their thoughts and critiques politely.

Chill yourself

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Ok - now I just finished listening to it and I feel that I just need to listen to it a few more times because right now I can't get the movie out of my head to really enjoy it (curse of loving something that is adapted).   I like a lot of it but there are also things that I am not a fan of.  But, this is something I believe I will come to love ESPECIALLY if I see it.  

"They're eating her and then they're going to eat me. OH MY GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOD!!!!" -Troll 2
Updated On: 8/30/19 at 11:25 AM
SouthernCakes
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It opens with some Tveit narration. But in the theater I found the opening to be a little low energy compared to the visuals. Something felt off. And all of Tveit’s narration stopped the shows flow dead in its tracks.
LoriBelle2
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It captures the show as I remember it. The songs still sound awful.
Hope076430
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The show for me in itself is probably the most fun i have had at the theater in a long time. I love modern musicals that can be a tad depressing....Next to Normal, Dear Evan, Spring Awakening...but in my opinion, i love a show that just has you smiling from ear to ear when you leave. Moulin Rouge is just that to me. However, after listening to the cast album all morning something is missing. I very much still love it and will continue to hum the melodies for a while but i can't tell what isn't hitting the home run for me. maybe like some people said there isn't enough power to some of the songs. I agree that Aaron's Roxanne is missing his normal force that is portrayed in the show. (maybe it's the idea to get people to see it live which is understandable). Still though a lot of fun to listen to! 

theaterdarling
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For all of you taking a deep dive into the cast recording, the below links to an Interesting NEW YORKER article on Baz Luhrmann's involvement as the recording's producer, especially in describing his coaxing performances from Tveit and Olivo in their joint numbers. So implicit, tt seems, is his desire to greatly improve upon the performances he inherited from Timbers.  A bit of a subtle burn, I thought.  After the recording, I wonder if Tveit and Olivo then went back to the show with different, discernible approaches informed and/or enlightened  by Luhrmann's direction.  I saw it in Boston, so I can't compare the recording to how the songs were finally realized on stage in New York.

https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2019/09/02/baz-luhrmanns-moulin-rouge-mega-mashup

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ChildofEarth
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I didn’t love it. To me it highlights how strong Karen is, which makes Tveit sound weaker.

I still don’t love how it sounds. Am I asking for too much?
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I've seen Aaron Tveit many times on Broadway (''Next to Normal,'' ''Catch Me If You Can'' ), and in concert. He always sings with such passion and power. To me, he sounds spectacular onstage at ''Moulin Rouge!'' and on CD, as well. It blows me away that Aaron and Karen can sing this score 8 times a week. The cast album captures the excitement of their soaring vocals, and only makes me eager to see it again.

Updated On: 8/30/19 at 07:24 PM
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I'm just listening to it now and I think it's a recording I will come to like very much.

But my first reaction is that all the medleys are very distancing (and not in the good, Brechtian way): I'm too busy thinking, "What's that song? Where do I know it from? Are those the original lyrics or new ones?" to maintain any emotional evolvement in the show.

As a recording, however, very much worth the $11.99.

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I'm not a big fan of the film, but I still think this recording, with it's medleys and cacophony of song segments, distracts more than it adds to the original.  There's so much going on and I feel frequently pulled out of the story by all the 'oh-that-song" nostalgia for radio back in the day.  Karen Olivo once again proves she's the real deal but Tveit, unfortunately, once again proves he's got the pipes but not the power to always convince.  There's no edge to him as an actor and it reads as a bit bland.  I do love his voice, though, and he comes across as extremely likeable.

The shows a big hit and this parade of past pop tunes should entrance many, but it's just not for me.  I do hope the show's success continues for all involved, though.  Tveit, Olivo and Brustein have dedicated so much of their lives to musical theater and it's nice that they're getting to enjoy some of the icing on the cake.

Updated On: 8/31/19 at 09:53 PM
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inception
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Downloaded it just before a flight, but then watched a movie (Shazam - terrible!), so only listened to some. Won't see the show for nearly 4 months yet. Really like the Brightest Diamond number, love how much she tries to get that sort of sensual growl Shirley Bassey always delivers. I saw Ms Bassey in concert maybe 22 years ago, & she was amazing. Funny how so much I've read so far about Moulin Rouge has had a lot of bad-mouthing of Ms Olivo, but now after just hearing this, she is what I am looking forward to seeing for myself. Does that make sense? I'm jetlagged & loopy.
...
Ladybug101
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Here are a couple of things I saw in print about the MR soundtrack today:
Time Magazine's 5 Best Songs of the Week

“Crazy Rolling” is one of the most memorable of the new compositions: the mix of Gnarls Barkley’s “Crazy” and Adele’s “Rolling in the Deep” is seamless and powerful; instead of hopscotching from style to style (as in the “Elephant Love Medley”), the two songs blend as if they belonged together all along, with propulsive theatrical rock-pop orchestration and all-in vocal performances from Tveit and Olivo.

Madison Kircher at Vulture compiled a list of all song and segments (without editorializing) but here is how she ended the article:
"Excuse me while I go listen to Aaron Tveit belting “Rolling in the Deep” until the Earth’s temperatures become too hot to support human life. I think I’ve got a least a dozen listens left. Join me."

There is so much negativity about Aaron's Tveit's alleged weak and or bland singing (sorry my ear must not be a finely tuned as some of you) on this board I thought I would add the above plus as his fan it is just plain irksome to do nothing. Gee the Vulture woman didn't even mention Karen -- but I consider Aaron the real star of the song. MR didn't download this along with some others so if you just went to youtube you need to Spotify to hear this stellar effort.

If you read the New Yorker article that an earlier poster added demonstrated how hands on Baz is in producing the songs. I think he overproduced Roxanne with Tveit's voice echoing against itself weakening it. Just my opinion,

Since someone dredged up an older MR/Tveit thread, I will add this to it but I do have an opinion (which can be totally wrong about his at times being less energetic.) This I feel having seen him several times or reading fan accounts is very rare but he stagedoors a fair amound unlike Karen who my undertanding does very little (maybe I'm wrong). This is a very active show where they hurl Tveit across the stage in "Backstage Romance" (Bad Romance), he does a back whatever for several minutes during standing ovation for song and other things. He may just be tired and maybe should decide to be like Karen and leave the fans for the ensemble, etc. Since there is so much negativity here I read instagram and twitter fan reports (and his fans range from teens to those in their golden years per the photos). I didn't want a tween comment like has been thrown around on the board. And these people like him though maybe not as theatrical savvy as some of you. They count

I don't think he will forsake his fans but since few of you are his fans, do you really matter. Just makes me feel better to add a bit of balance along with the others who find him very talented here on the board.


Philly Theater Girl
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gray_area said: "I thought the album was a tad overproduced? Tried to go a little bit of everything and comes out a bit too much for my liking. I enjoyed the vocals better live, Tveit in particular sounds better live than in this recording. I'm still not a fan of Firework on the show but Olivo knocks that out of the park so I can't hate it as much.

But I agree, this is good music to listen to while at the gym.
"

I agree that some of the songs sounded overproduced. Roxanne is the one that comes to mind - I could have done without all the echoing (not sure what the technical term is), I think it takes something away from the song. Saw the show on Broadway and can attest that this song sound so much better live. Aaron Tveit sounds so much better live. There are some bootleg versions of Roxanne on the internet and they are so much better than what’s on the cast album.

havign said all that, I’m really enjoying the cast album. 


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