Mystic: The Musical Visions of Olivier Messiaen is a sort of greatest-hits package for Messiaen that followed in the wake of the composer's death in 1992, though it did not appear until 1996. It is a Messiaen compilation that shapes certain movements taken out of longer works into a sort of easy listening context, which does provide some clues to the uninitiated as to how to access Messiaen, but in itself, it is a little disingenuous. There are no transcribed birdcalls, no "Chronochromie," nothing from "Quatour du le fin de temps," nor anything else that indicates what a challenging and intense composer Messiaen was. Just the prettiest parts of some pieces that are not in themselves necessarily very "pretty," couched in a sort of vaguely stated mysticism. The individual movements themselves are certainly well done and recorded—all of them are taken from the exemplary work of conductor Myung-Whun Chung for Deutsche Grammophon, recordings that Messiaen himself regarded as authoritative. But these pieces deserve to be heard in the context to which they belong, even if it is part of an unwieldy and sometimes messy 10-movement symphony such as the "Turangilila." However, as a disc with which to get one's feet wet in Messiaen, Mystic is not so bad—just bear in mind that there are a lot more ingredients to Messiaen's celestial banquet than this disc would imply.Uncle Dave Lewis, All Music Guide
Andrea Bocelli's Romanza is the bestselling classical crossover album of all time, having sold well over 17 million copies globally. To mark 20 years since the album's original release, and the success of 'Con Te Partiro' and 'Time To Say Goodbye' a 20th Anniversary Edition was released in November 2016. The original album has been remastered and now include bonus tracks.
Although the Crusaders could not have known it at the time, their recording of "Street Life" (which features a memorable vocal by Randy Crawford) was a last hurrah for the 20-year old group. Their recordings of the next few years would decline in interest until the band gradually faded away in the '80s. However this particular set is well worth picking up for the 11-minute title cut and there is good playing by the three original members (Wilton Felder on tenor, soprano and electric bass, keyboardist Joe Sample and drummer Stix Hooper) along with guitarist Barry Finnerty; horn and string sections, plus additional guitarists are utilized on Sample's commercial but listenable arrangements.
California may be the largest state in the Union, but it's only one state nuzzling one ocean, with only so many people living near the coastline, and a small minority of them have attempted to navigate waves on a board, much less possess the fetching physique to do so in public. Obviously, then, surf music isn't for surfers. If it were, Rhino would put out a greatest-hits EP instead of a four-disc box set. Cowabunga! is all the permanent-wave stuff most people will ever need.