Andrea Bocelli Verdi - Il Trovatore (Decca) Manrico in Verdi's Il Trovatore is one of the showiest opera tenor roles, so it's only natural for Decca to choose it as another star vehicle for Andrea Bocelli. The 45-year-old Italian tenor has already recorded Puccini's La Boheme and Tosca with competent but less famous colleagues. This recording is hardly star-studded, but Bocelli fans won't complain. It reveals his honeyed voice and gifted technique, especially in the Di quella pira aria at the end of Part III with its famous high C. But Bocelli often flings out words rather than shapes them in rounded musical phrases. Still worse is that, although he shows commitment to the role - as brave soldier and romantic troubadour - his singing is seldom penetrating. He doesn't quite succeed in bringing out the feeling of Manrico towards his lover, Leonora, and his gypsy foster mother, Azucena. Of the rest of the cast, Veronica Villarroel is mellifluous as Leonora, but seems to languish long before she swallows the poison in Part IV. Elena Zaremba offers a well-sculpted Azucena who is consumed by vengefulness and remorse, and Carlo Guelfi is a convincingly evil Count of Luna. Steven Mercurio conducts the Orchestra and Chorus of the Teatro Massimo Bellini di Catania without many surprises. He favours dull tempos and even the Anvil Chorus comes across lethargic. The mix is also a little muddled, with the singers placed too much to the back. And the booklet provides only part of the libretto - the full version (with translations) can be downloaded from disc one.