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Sting's Symphonicities
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Sting's Symphonicities  CD a finely balances old pop-rock tunes with Royal Philharmonic's classic sound

Monday, July 12th 2010, 4:00 AM


"Symphonicities" means to re-imagine some of the star's best known songs with The Police, as well as those from his solo career, in collaboration with a full symphony orchestra (namely The Royal Philharmonic).

But the disc's kick-off number - a take on the Police's brisk and choppy "Next To You" - stumbles into one of the deepest pot-holes for an orchestral/pop hybrid. The arrangement makes the strings imititate a rock band rather than finding a way to reinvent it. The violins, violas and cellos hack away at the riff as if they were amped-up guitars, which only makes them sound weak and phoney by comparison.

Happily, that's the project's only outright stumble. Cynics on the subject of Sting will surely be surprised by the CD's lack of pretention. For the most part, it avoids.............


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