various artists,
Bambi II
(Walt Disney, 2006)

Cold play this album without first seeing the title or insert, and you will know it is from Disney. That feel-good factor emanates from every note -- and that is not a criticism. In fact, I welcome an album that makes the listener tingle with joy in an era when so much of our songs must of necessity deal with the less palatable in life.

OK, look at the insert and you get the "aaaahhh" factor as well. We all recall Bambi from those beautiful -- are they that far off? -- days of our youth and movie going. This soundtrack comes from the latest incarnation of the fawn and I am sure both the movie and the soundtrack will entrance a whole new generation.

With the talents of Alison Kraus, Michelle Lewis and Martina McBride helping to deliver a set of great movie songs, you cannot go wrong.

Kraus opens with "There is Life," and you are away deep in the forest again. We find it a country music forest as McBride sings "Through Your Eyes." This has a very nice delivery and beat and not having seen the film I can imagine the wonderful visuals that must enhance the experience on film.

As so often with soundtrack albums, we probably lose much of the magic if we have not seen the movie. But having said that the score tracks here stand up very well as independent pieces of good orchestral music.

In addition to the music from the current movie we get a reprise of some beautiful tracks from the original release and a bonus track called "Sing the Day," which turns out to be my favourite on the album.

Listen also to "Love is a Song" the main title song from the original and marvel at the longevity of this film. This dates from more than six decades ago. How many current releases will be enchanting or even interesting people in 2066?

Even if you cannot see the film, this album will definitely lift your spirits.

by Nicky Rossiter
22 April 2006

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