From the soulful and gospel inspired rendition of ‘Nutbush City Limits’ all the way through to ‘(Simply) The Best’, this self-assured and powerful cast recording of the Olivier Award-winning musical is an exciting invigorating soundtrack to listen to.
Thanks to some absolutely stunning arrangements by Nicholas Skilbeck on songs such as the romantic and soulful sounding ‘Let’s Stay Together’ (sung with great heartfelt emotion by Natey Jones) and ‘What’s Love Got to Do With it’ for example, this is a soundtrack that brings the stage show to life in your very own surroundings.
But of course you can not deny also the power behind Adrienne Warren’s sublime vocals that capture Tina Turner’s utterly unique voice but she also manages to put her own style on the songs to make it feel authentic. In particular if you listen to her renditions of ‘ River Deep, Mountain High’ and ‘Proud Mary’ – you can hear some of Turner’s technique within some of the notes but Warren never tries too hard to ‘sound like’ her too precisely, offering a refreshing take on her most popular songs.
Elsewhere, Olivier Award winner Kobna Holdbrook-Smith offers a fascinating insight into Ike Turner’s own vocals – cool and charismatic but with a hint of danger about him that you can just hear underpinning ‘The Hunter’ that ties in nicely with the way in which he portrays the character on stage. Meanwhile, on songs such as ‘Shake a Tail Feather’ and ‘Disco Inferno’ you get a real sense of the energy and enthusiasm that is portrayed by the rest of the cast and ensemble on stage eight shows a week. Both these songs are electrifying to listen to and make you want to jump up and dance.
It is an album that is filled with the same energy and passion that audiences see on stage but magnifying the powerhouse vocals that are on display by all of the cast – from Adrienne Warren in particular whose confidence and charisma shines through on every song that she delivers.
This cast recording perfectly captures and documents just how important these songs are in telling Tina Turner’s story from beginning to end. Music has always been a huge part of her story and the way in which it gives her courage and strength through the hard times is made just as clear here as it is on the stage. Highly recommended.
By Emma Clarendon
Tina – The Tina Turner Musical Cast Recording is available to download now.