Awake Live

Josh Groban

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Awake Live Review

by Matt Collar

Awake Live finds classical crossover vocalist Josh Groban performing on tour in support of his 2006 studio album, Awake. While that album perfectly showcased Groban's knack for epic, deeply moving adult contemporary and classical pop, like many of his studio efforts it was somewhat hemmed in by the hermetically sealed nature of the recording studio and didn't quite capture Groban's burnished, mythically romantic persona. Fortunately, Awake Live manages to best its studio counterpart with an airy, stadium feel that allows both Groban and his backing ensemble to truly soar musically. Backed by a full pop band replete with orchestral and choir members, Groban is free to let loose on the mike and the crowd reacts in kind. Never bombastic or garish, Groban is nonetheless a powerhouse vocalist and dewy pop performer who elicts audible screams from his audience. Framed by technically adroit and sweeping cinematic arrangements, Groban simply can't lose on-stage, and the result is an album that finally lives up to his gargantuan talent. [This two-disc set features a CD and DVD including bonus features.]

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