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Digital Subscriptions > Country Music > Feb/Mar 2019 > ROY ORBISON & THE ROYAL PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA

ROY ORBISON & THE ROYAL PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA

Strings with everything…

UNCHAINED MELODIES

LEGACY/ROYSBOYS

★★★

What’s that line from Jurassic Park? “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.” Substitute ‘record executives’ for scientists and that feels pertinent to this second collection of Roy Orbison vocals plucked from their original environments and surrounded by the lush strings of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. The challenge here is that Orbison’s best-known tunes – Oh, Pretty Woman, Crying, Only The Lonely – have already been given the orchestral makeover. Thus, this selection dates from later in the crooner’s career, including She’s A Mystery To Me, California Blue, and Orbison’s cover of Elvis Costello’s The Comedians. Fine songs, but none of them iconic in the manner of his earlier hits. While the Philharmonic lends itself better to the ballads, they smother rockers like Heartbreak Radio. DW

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