Saxophonist Donny McCaslin brought a fresh perspective to the acoustic-electronic jazz soundscape with 2012's Casting for Gravity (Greenleaf Music) which earned a Grammy nomination for "Best Instrumental Jazz Solo" for the track "Stadium Jazz." Thankfully it was not a one-off as McCaslin reassembles the tightly knit band and savvy production from saxophonist David Binney in Fast Future, a release that continues the groove factor.
As Donny Osmond moved more and more into territory occupied by MOR singers Michael Ball and Michael Bublé, he found himself, an adult contemporary singer, competing even with the likes of Westlife. He didn't disown his past as a child star, opening the album with a re-recording of his most famous hit, "Puppy Love," and From Donny…With Love also included tracks from his childhood in the early '70s with songs like "When I Fall in Love" and "The Twelfth of Never." Both of these are so laid-back, unlike his earlier versions: the former is even slower than the Nat King Cole original. There are quite faithful, if unemotional versions of "How Long," "How Deep Is Your Love," "Let's Stay Together," "Right Here Waiting," "This Guys in Love with You," and "If," and Osmond returned to his love of musical theater with the songs "This Is the Moment" from Jeckyl & Hyde, "Seasons of Love" from Rent, and "Luck Be a Lady" from Guys & Dolls. The album ended with the only new track, "Never Gonna Say Goodbye," a song recorded live at Edinburgh Castle.
The 58-track Never My Love: The Anthology, very different from the 61-track French and Japanese release Someday We'll All Be Free (2010), appeals slightly more to fanatics than it does newcomers. Disc one covers Donny Hathaway's singles and albums highlights, from 1969 and 1972 A-sides recorded with June Conquest through 1978's "You Were Meant for Me." There's a lot of familiar ground, all of it representative, but many selections differ from the album counterparts, including the two-part 7" version of "The Ghetto," the promo edit of "Thank You Master (For My Soul)," and single edits of "Giving Up," "A Song for You," and "Come Little Children." The second disc consists of unreleased studio recordings, none of which overlaps with the material unearthed on Someday We'll All Be Free.