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Aria: The Opera Album

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Yes, Bolton can sing opera, high notes and all. But his style can be rough, and his voice — tiny by operatic standards — needs the electronic sheen it’s given here. Bocelli, an Italian pop singer who conquered upscale America on PBS, has the operatic style in his blood. And at least on Aria: The Opera Album he seems to know that his voice is too small sometimes; facing what ought to be a grand climax, he’ll find a way to sing it softly. Both get points for enthusiasm, but if you really want opera, buy the real thing. C+

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