Various Artists

Sacred Songs of the Virgin Guadalupe

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While it's released by Universal Latino, Sacred Songs of the Virgin Guadalupe is for the most part a fairly straightforward collection of hymns, choral, and classical music with only a few tracks qualifying it as a Latin music release. That doesn't mean it's a totally flawed album, however; indeed, Sarah Brightman's pristine rendition of "Requiem: Pie Jesu," Luciano Pavarotti's rousing "Panis Angelicus," and José Carreras' heartfelt "Ave Maria" are enough to make it worthwhile. Likewise, the Choir of Trinity's "Agnus Dei" and the Stuttgart Chamber Orchestra's reading of Pachelbel's Canon in D maintain both the high quality and spiritual feel of the album. Only Pedro Fernandez's "Virgen India," Luis Cobos' "Asi Es Mexico," and Mercedes Sosa's "Credo" can truly be called Latin music, and while they're decent tracks in and of themselves, they don't gel particuarly well with the sacred music that precedes them. It's an admittedly scattered album, but fans of religious music and Latin music may still find reasons to like Sacred Songs of the Virgin Guadalupe.

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