First of all, whether you've seen the show or not, you'll find that listening to the performances will transport you. Truly, I think you could close your eyes and fully imagine what is going on. Each cast member brings such full character to their vocals, the recording is nearly as emotionally satisfying as seeing the show live. The ensemble, including The Fates, is wonderful, with tight harmonies and terrific jazz-stylings. Just as impressive is the show's band, a character unto themselves, frequently reminding me of those bands you hear on a boozy, warm New Orleans evening.
|The Principal Cast of Hadestown|
All of this really has to do with Anais Mitchell's masterpiece of a score. There isn't a dud on either disc. Her lyrics are poetic, emotional perfection. Kudos, too, to Michael Chorney and Todd Sickafoose, whose orchestrations and arrangements are sheer perfection.