Andrew Lloyd Webber, "Love Never Dies"

74 Billboard Rating

Andrew Lloyd Webber's compositional style on the cast album for "Love Never Dies," the sequel to the widely celebrated "Phantom of the Opera," continues to synthesize genres ranging from opera to prog rock, while enlightening listeners with its artful melodies and expert craftsmanship. Setting the New York scene of the musical (which recently premiered in London) is "The Coney Island Waltz," which is characterized by unexpected changes in rhythm and harmony, and features musical phrases that recur throughout the work. Beginning with a gloomy piano and building to a passionate climax, the haunting love ballad "Till I Hear You Sing" has a melody reminiscent of "Phantom" title "Music of the Night," while the title track draws heavily on Webber's song "Our Kind of Love" from "The Beautiful Game." The new musical's lyrics may lack the narrative tension of "Phantom," but the rich harmonies and Tchaikovsky-like orchestrations are nonetheless full of expression.

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