on August 28, 2014
Herr "Hansi" Last is very German, very danceable--in a nonstop way--and fairly prolific, with some 199+ album releases, not quite the late Franck Pourcel's 250 but the man is unstoppable and discographers and happy Polydor bean counters are still totting up the nonstop album sales. He has given us "happy music" and "nonstop dancing" and progressed from German MOR to polka, rock, disco, party, ABBA, country and pseudoclassical. Hansi's orchestra charts resemble medical charts as they are clinically Germanic, alternating in predictably hard-driving, take-no-prisoners and schmaltzy modes (the drummist must get very tired) but despite the Teutonic inflexibility (rubato verboten) they are just irresistible for flashy fevered dancers (nonstop) and for armchair home listeners, happily dazed by the relentless drumming.
These tracks were all recorded, immaculately, before appreciative UK audiences (who recognize every hit and signature arrangement), and the chorus sing in the Queen's English. It's a definitive anthology, at a bargain price, and includes all of his trademark songs and styles (minus tango and polka) and will tempt you to buy every last Last album in that encyclopedic Polydor discography. His smash signature hit "Games that lovers play" is stashed away on the second CD (so too a really blistering "Love for sale" ala disco), but en route you can happily play, and replay nonstop, "Mamma mia," "Fernando," "Dancing queen," "Downtown," the signature "Biscaya" and "Reach out (I'll be there)." It's a genuine pleasure trip, and your dancing feet will be happier for it. Let the party begin.
on September 3, 2015
James Last has entertained and enthralled music lovers since the mid 60's. His "Happy Music" has crossed generational lines in a way no other performer or bandleader has ever done. Hansi, as he's affectionately called by his fans, ran the gamut from classical to country to rock and roll, and made it appeal to every listener. For those not familiar with his music, this is a nice overview. One thing you need to know... all of the selections on this two-CD set are gleaned from live concert performances. The tracks on this set are also available from Amazon with the original studio versions. These are must-haves. Sadly, James Last passed away back in June of this year, but the legacy of music he left us will live on for years to come.