South - To A Warmer Place
Label: FRANK SINATRA DIGITAL REPRISE
This bleak 1981 set plays like a modern update of a film noir and may well be Sinatra's last truly great album. Arranger Don Costa ruins the opening Stephen Sondheim ballad with a soft-rock arrangement, but things pick up considerably when brooding stringmeister Gordon Jenkins takes over. The strongest Jenkins-helmed cuts are "A Long Night" and "Bang Bang," which Sinatra's daughter also covered to great effect. But the finest moment is reserved for Sinatra's greatest arranger, Nelson Riddle, on the vocalist's devastating medley of "The Gal That Got Away/It Never Entered My Mind."