Il Divo [DualDisc]
Building on the success of such popular acts as Amici Forever and the Three Tenors, the all-male quartet Il Divo join forces for this stirring self-titled debut. The result of a talent search launched by American Idol judge Simon Cowell, the photogenic foursome -- Spaniard Carlos Marin, American David Miller, Frenchman Sebastian Izambard, and Swiss Urs Buhler -- put forth their collective vocal talents in a program of operatically flavored pop, including such favorites as "Nella Fantasia" (a Sarah Brightman signature) and an Italian version of "My Way," as well as songs in Spanish (the opening "Regresa a mi" -- based on Toni Braxton's "Unbreak My Heart") and English ("Every Time I Look at You"). Save for Izambard, who is branded "vox populi," each boasts classical training, and when singing together, their rich, primed-for-Verdi voices form a potent blend that many will find exhilarating. It's as if Russell Watson, Mario Frangoulis, Josh Groban, and Andrea Bocelli united to form a classical-crossover dream team. Of course, one listener's delight is another's schmaltz, and the largely sentimental, Vegas-ready numbers here will change no one's point of view on the joys (or otherwise) of "popera." But those whose CD collections have grown apace with the rapid rise of crossover in recent years will deem the gifted hunks of Il Divo wholly irresistible.