Our Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars
The Academy Award-winning film, “Once” is one of my favorite films. The music in the film is so amazing and in fact, I have had the soundtrack on my iPhone since the film was originally released. When I heard that the film was being brought to Broadway, I was both nervous and extremely happy. Well let me tell you I was extremely satisfied with this cast recording and it only makes me want to see this play more now. Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová from The Swell Season are two of my favorite artists, even with their solo albums. I am not sure how this is possible but they took one of my favorites albums ever and ACTUALLY made it better.
“When Your Mind’s Made Up” and “Falling Slowing (Reprise)” are honestly breathtaking songs on this album. Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti plus backed by the rest of the cast in parts are simply show stopping! I get chills listening to it every time and I can put these on repeat for hours, as can the whole album. The only issue I have with the album is that I am not truly fond of the two new songs, “Abandoned in Bandon” and Czech folk song “Ej Pada Pada Rosicka”. In fact I have the album on my iPhone and have taken off those songs. I also wanted to make a note about the track “The Moon”, which is performed by Will Connolly is also a treasure. I was originally taken back since it wasn’t performed by Steve but, holy crap!, I really dig it. Great chance they took and a wonderful payoff. Overall this album will be guaranteed to make my top albums of 2012 and I look forward to seeing this show.
Let me tell you Steve Kazee and Cristin Milioti are absolutely perfect on the recording. Glen Hansard’s vocal range is hard to match and Steve really nails it and improves certain areas as well. One thing I noticed from the moment this album started is that I felt like it was recording live from the stage not in a recording studio. I felt that due to that it makes you feel like you are there on stage with them. I definitely feel that this process enhances the Martin Lowe’s amazing orchestrations and really showcases the live stage production. I recommend this highly to all fans of The Swell Season and Broadway fans a like, been sure to buy this album. Also make sure you get a chance to experience this show live on stage, if it is anything like the album it is sure to be absolutely amazing.