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A rehash, but a good rehash.
on June 10, 2003
All of the songs on MEMORIES, a love song compilation, are first-rate, however there seems to be little reason why any fan would need to own it now. Barbra had won over a whole new legion of pop fans with the phenomenal success of 1980's GUILTY, but was working on the film YENTL full time by 1981 and didn't have time to record a follow up release. Columbia wanted to release something, so they decided to release a basically revamped version of the multi-platinum GREATEST HITS, VOLUME TWO, and get Barbra in the studio to record two new songs to reel in her long time fans.
The strategy worked: MEMORIES hit the Top Ten and reached Quintuple Platinum status in sales, but it irritated her longtime fans who had to buy material they already owned on other albums just to get the new songs. For the record, the two new tracks both rank among her finest work. The hit single "Comin' In and Out Of Your Life" (#11 Pop, #2 Adult Contemporary) is a sentimental classic, and Barbra's stunning rendition of "Memory" is the definitive recording of the phenomenal CATS theme. Also, MEMORIES does spotlight a couple terrific album tracks ("New York State Of Mind," "The Love Inside") that causal fans may not have been familiar with, and contains a previously unreleased solo recording of "Lost Inside Of You," which is superior to the original duet version from the A STAR IS BORN soundtrack.
But three of these ten tracks were making their third appearance on a Streisand album, and four of the cuts had just been released GREATEST HITS, VOLUME TWO a scant three years before. Now that "Comin' In and Out Of Your Life" and "Memory" are available elsewhere, there is no reason that anyone but the most casual of fans would need to own this album. The material is great and the photos of the front and back covers are beautiful, but you can basically find everything here on other albums that provide a better value.