Il Divo remains a source of escapism for female fans. Even the title A Musical Affair sounds like an illicit affair, taking listeners through Broadway and movie classics.
The group have this gimmick of having Italian translations of the lyrics, as if to add a touch of exotic class for audiences. But really, the lyrics should be left alone. I had trouble singing along to Il Divo’s first hit, their cover of Toni Braxton’s Unbreak My Heart, off their live concert Blu-Ray a few years back (which honestly came with the Blu-Ray player).
Memory is a revelation for those who grew up with the Pussycat Dolls, as featured guest Nicole Scherzinger really shows off her astounding talent as a vocalist.
Il Divo enlists further help of several stars from the musical world. Heather Headley (now on the musical adaptation of the movie ‘The Bodyguard’) adds some drama to Can You Feel The Love Tonight, but nothing can replace the epic Elton John original off the soundtrack to ‘The Lion King’. Kristen Chenoweth belts for her life as always on All I Ask Of You (off ‘The Phantom of the Opera’). Michael Ball, the first-ever performer of Love Changes Everything, has an updated duet with Il Divo of this track.
You’ll Never Walk Alone, which is now well-known as a solidarity anthem in the football world, may even capture a few new fans despite its bombastic arrangement.
The strangest inclusion on A Musical Affair is definitely Queen’s Who Wants To Live Forever, but the original’s arrangement was made for musicals anyway.
The placing of If Ever I Would Leave You towards the end of the album suggests that this would sound like a concert closer, with Il Divo farewelling their emotional fans. Nevertheless, the best is saved to last with a live duet with the legendary Barbra Streisand. She represents what everyone in the musical world wants, as she has achieved everything: Tonys, Oscars and Grammys. The Music Of The Night takes listeners back into the concert hall and to what Il DIvo do best: appealing to the emotions of its audience.
A Musical Affair is exactly that: a romantic night through songs from the greatest musicals. Some of the tracks are a tad overbearing and overdramatic (Tonight, Bring Him Home), but that’s probably the whole point. These tracks are bound to bring female fans into a frenzy in the home and in concert.