The 15th volume in Capitol Records' Ultra-Lounge series is another collection of uptempo numbers from the label's extensive vault of traditional pop singers of the 1950s and ‘60s. The idea here seems to have been to collect a bunch of familiar tunes and a group of name artists, but not necessarily to match songs to their best-known performers. So, for instance, Jack Jones is present, but he's singing "Angel Eyes," a song associated with Frank Sinatra, while "Wives and Lovers," Jones' signature song, is sung by Vic Damone instead. (A good reason for that, of course, is that Jones recorded "Wives and Lovers" for Kapp Records, not Capitol.) Similarly, Peggy Lee, not Astrud Gilberto, sings "The Boy from Ipanema," and Wayne Newton, not Sinatra, sings "Strangers in the Night." (As usual with Capitol compilations, Sinatra, long a flagship artist for the label, is conspicuous by his absence, no doubt due to a contractual restriction.) Dean Martin is associated with "Just in Time," a song he sang in the movie version of Bells Are Ringing, but that's an exception to the rule. No matter who's singing which song, however, the rhythm remains uptempo, and the renditions are assured. Particularly notable are the vocal versions of old big-band hits like Eydie Gorme's leadoff reading of "Frenesi" and Sarah Vaughan's typically scat-filled rendition of "Perdido."
Share this page
AllMusic Review by William Ruhlmann