Picks and Pans Review: Barbra—the Concert

updated 10/24/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/24/1994 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Barbra Streisand

Here comes the fall offensive of Operation Buttah. Having triumphantly returned to the concert stage this summer after an absence of 27 years, Barbra Streisand now unleashes compact disc, cassette, VHS video and laser disc mementos of the tour. The two-CD album captures New Yorker Streisand playing intimately to her hometown crowd. Opening with "As If We Never Said Goodbye," ending with "Somewhere" and touching on many career highlights in between (yes, "People" and "The Way We Were" are here), Streisand masterfully turns Madison Square Garden into a 17,000-seat cabaret. Though live albums usually aren't for audiophiles—the sound inevitably has an ear-pressed-up-against-the-window quality—they are valuable when they can give you a front-row seat to an exceptional performance. In that case, this album delivers—and, unlike on the tour, you don't have to float a loan to afford the price of admission. (Columbia)

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