This compilation, assembled by the German branch of Sony Music Entertainment's Columbia Records label, draws on recordings Liza Minnelli made for Columbia that were released on four LPs between 1972 and 1977 - the studio albums Liza Minnelli, The Singer (1973) and Tropical Nights (1977), and the concert albums Liza with a "Z" (1972) and Live at the Winter Garden (1974).
Celebrated Aussie musician Mark Seymour has compiled a new retrospective full-length album celebrating 30 years of songwriting ahead of embarking on a six-date national tour from late June. Roll Back The Stone 1985-2016 collects Seymour's best-known and best-loved works — yes, including Hunters & Collectors favourites such as Throw Your Arms Around Me, When The River Runs Dry and the evergreen Holy Grail — re-recorded and reimagined with his current backing band, The Undertow. The album was laid down over three nights in the Scrap Museum, at Richmond's Bakehouse Studios, and draws on the complementary talents of instrumentalists Cameron McKenzie (guitars), Peter Maslen (drums) and John Favaro (bass) to imbue Seymour's songs, no matter their physical age, with a renewed sense of purpose and immediacy.
This is perhaps the best of the many Zorro films as Tyrone Power gives an outstanding performance as the alternately swishing and swashbuckling son of a 19th century California aristocrat. As a champion of the oppressed, Zorro must face a wicked governor portrayed by J. Edward Bromberg, who, of course, has a beautiful niece whom our hero loves. Basil Rathbone is a delightfully evil assistant to the governor. Based on Johnston McCulley's novel The Curse of Capistrano, The Mark of Zorro was a remake of the 1920 silent film and by far superior to all the Zorro incarnations. Interspersed with humor and one-liners but still keeping up with the highest of swashbuckling traditions, it is an action-packed story of one man standing against a corrupt, oppressive government on behalf of those less able to bear their burdens.
This version of The Queen of Spades was originally recorded in 1974 and made available as a special import; it was then generally released by Philips in 1988. Reviewing it at the time, AB gave a level account of its strengths, but had little difficulty in preferring the Tchakarov set when it was issued in 1990. Deleted by Philips, the Ermler performance has now been restored to the Melodiya catalogue. I cannot see anyone dissenting from AB's view: certainly I do not, except perhaps to regard him as being over-generous in his account of Atlantov's Herman in calling it ''loud and unsubtle''. Stronger words would also be appropriate, especially when Atlantov is compared with the sensitive Wieslaw Ochman on the Tchakarov set. Valentina Levko is a good Countess in what is a well-established Russian tradition of responses to the role: AB thought the old lady's reminiscences not so pointedly delivered as by some other singers, and I would add that she would certainly have acquired a better French accent during her long sojourn as the Venus of Paris.