Country singers rule this soundtrack of Elvis Presley covers, which is every bit as flawed, frivolous and fun as the film from whence it came. While Billy Joel parodies "All Shook Up" and "Heartbreak Hotel," John Mellencamp labors to avoid parodying "Jailhouse Rock," and U2's Bono transforms "Can't Help Falling in Love" into an obsessive parable about hero worship, folks like Ricky Van Shelton and Trisha Yearwood just sit back and sing the things, which at least makes them pleasant after more than one plaing. Dwight Yoakam's power-chord-country version of "Suspicious Minds" and Travis Tritt's "Burning Love" rank with their best remakes. Breaking the trend are pop crooner Bryan Ferry, who sings a seductive British soul version of "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" and the usually trustworthy Vince Gill, whose Pat Boone-style rendition of Arthur Crudup's classic blues "That's All Right" cleans up the grammar.
Jim Steinman (the melodramatic writer behind Meat Loaf's Bat out of Hell) is the author of many of the tracks here, and they have his typical rock & roll Sturm und Drang, especially when the backup group consists of members of Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band. Also on hand are The Blasters, Maria McKee, and Ry Cooder. The album's hit single turned out to be Dan Hartman's "I Can Dream about You".
Even though it relies heavily on film scorer John Barry's by-now formulaic (if no less effective) methodology of fusing his distinctively luxuriant string arrangements with the music of whatever time or locale the score sets out to evoke (in this case, largely the Hollywood of the 1910s and '20s), the composer triumphed once again, garnering his second Academy Award nomination of the 1990s. Perhaps because of the years he spent dues-paying with English pop and jazz combos, Barry gets inside this period jazz and ragtime with both enthusiasm and, more importantly, taste, recalling similar effective efforts on Francis Coppola's The Cotton Club.
For better or worse, Andrew Lloyd Webber's adaptation of Gaston Leroux's gothic horror/romance novel has done for stage musicals what Spielberg's Jaws did for fish stories, with worldwide sales of its original cast album approaching 25 million. While director Joel Schumacher's film turns on his typically ambitious visual verve, its new film soundtrack recording has been paradoxically focused in scope, yet beefed up dynamically via the brawny presence of a hundred piece orchestra and The London Boys Choir. This double-disc version showcases all of Phantom's songs, with Gerard Butler imparting a welcome, youthful sensuality to his Phantom, making a fine foil for Emily Rossum's ever-conflicted Christine. Original show orchestrator David Cullen has fashioned compelling new contemporary arrangements to frame Webber's songs–which now conclude with the lilting, upbeat new ballad he wrote for the film, "Learn to Be Lonely," sung by Minnie Driver's Carlotta.
The Sheltering Sky is the original soundtrack to the 1990 film The Sheltering Sky (based on a novel by Paul Bowles) starring Debra Winger and John Malkovich. The original score was composed mainly by Ryuichi Sakamoto. The album won the Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score and the LAFCA Award for Best Music.
Providing an excellent introduction to Latin music, the soundtrack to the film The Mambo Kings mixes stellar artists of the genre including Tito Puente, Arturo Sandoval, and Celia Cruz with well-known performers with roots in the form like Linda Ronstadt and Los Lobos. This 2000 rerelease adds a remix of "Ran Kan Kan" by Olga Tañon and "Beautiful Maria of My Soul" featuring Antonio Banderas with Compay Segundo.