As it says on the back cover, Michael Feinstein With the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra is the first recording he's made with a symphonic orchestra. For this special occasion, Feinstein and Alan Broadbent -- the conductor and arranger for the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra -- decided to stick to celebrated songs from the great American popular songbook, ranging from "Stormy Weather" and "Laura" to "On a Clear Day (You Can See Forever)." Much of this comes across as a slyly romantic, lightly swinging big band session -- less Sinatra and Strings, more a tempered Ring a Ding Ding. That's hardly a bad thing, since it plays up Feinstein's classy, understated delivery and the skillful arrangements of Broadbent. A side-effect is that the album isn't as revelatory as it appears it could be -- it does not uncover a new side of Feinstein, even if it's his first time with a full orchestra -- but that hardly matters when the music is as assured and satisfying as this.
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AllMusic Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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