Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Glee: The Music, Volume 2
Genres: Special Interest, Pop, Soundtracks
There's no such thing as too much Glee! Featuring 17 more songs from the hit FOX show including "Imagine", "Jump" and "My Life Would Suck Without You" Track Listing: — 1. Proud Mary — 2. Endless Love — 3. I'll Stand By You — 4... more »
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There's no such thing as too much Glee! Featuring 17 more songs from the hit FOX show including "Imagine", "Jump" and "My Life Would Suck Without You" Track Listing:
1. Proud Mary
2. Endless Love
3. I'll Stand By You
4. Don't Stand So Close To Me/Young Girl
6. (You're) Having My Baby
7. Lean On Me
8. Don't Make Me Over
10. True Colors
12. Smile (Cover of Lily Allen Song)
13. Smile (Cover of Charlie Chaplin Song)
14. And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going
15. Don't Rain On My Parade
16. You Can't Always Get What You Want
17. My Life Would Suck Without You
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Could be better than Volume 1...seriously!!
Larry Davis | NYC/Long Island, NY | 12/10/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Well, after listening to this second volume of music at least twice from "Glee", my fave scripted show on TV next to "Lost", and having lived with Volume 1 since its release & having met the 8 main "kids" (they're all in their 20s, not exactly kids, even tho they play highschoolers in a gleeclub), I must say they possibly outdid Volume 1, in that Volume 2 is a little deeper, not so obvious, a bit more creative in song choices and fresh arrangements...plus, like Volume 1, these songs can work equally well in the show's plotlines and as an actual ALBUM in itself...with highs, lows, peaks and valleys, a beginning, middle & end. Here's the breakdown:
1. Proud Mary (9/10)...fun reworking of the John Fogerty/Creedence Clearwater Revival tune, covered previously by Ike & Tina Turner...the Glee Cast's version is like Ike & Tina's, stylistically, but with a fresh dose of the cast's energy...and I LOVE the brass section...espesh the bari sax, nice start...it works equally well here without the visuals of the performance in wheelchairs too.
2. Endless Love (9/10)...a sweet reworking of the 1981 Lionel Richie/Diana Ross duet that was also covered by the late Luther Vandross & my schoolmate Mariah Carey (yes I actually went to HS with her)...yes on the show, Matt Morrison's Will and Lea Michele's Rachel duetting on this was both funny and beyond awkward, but as a recording, it's as good as either of the prior two versions...I used to HATE it back in 1981...I was 13, whattaya expect, but I appreciate it now, and both are in great form and blend well together.
3. I'll Stand By You (9/10)...Cory's/Finn's cover of the Pretenders' HUGE 1994 ballad "I'll Stand By You", which also later became a #1 hit in the UK in 2004 in a GREAT cover by the best girlgroup EVER, Girls Aloud...Cory's/Finn's version is not as good as the original (what is??), but it IS as good as the Girls Aloud version, and it's interesting because it's never been covered by a guy before...not that I know of...but he sounds better than ever and more comfortable in his own voice here, moreso than on his spots on Volume 1 really...it works nicely here, and on the show where he was singing to the video sonogram of Quinn's unborn daughter.
4. Don't Stand So Close To Me/Young Girl (9/10)...the first surprise here and first CD-released mashup from the show, of Matt/Will singing the Police's "Don't Stand So Close To Me" and Gary Puckett & The Union Gap's 1960s pop classic "Young Girl", and at first, it felt jarring and that it didn't work at all, after living with it and studying it in my head, seeing/feeling how the 2 songs' puzzle pieces fit together, it really works, and Matt/Will's in great pop vocal form here...love it.
5. Crush (9/10)...a cover of a 90s 1-hit wonder song popularized by Jennifer Paige that hit #3...covered by Lea/Rachel, and this type of song suits her voice when she does pop perfectly...I've always loved it and her version is sweet...it was funny on the show when Lea/Rachel expressed her crush to Matt/Will in his car, after he forced her to sit in the back...I am thrilled here because I love the song, and on the show, Matt/Will shut the music off after the first chorus...here, I'm very happy it's the full song, yay!!
6. (You're) Having My Baby (10/10)...the Paul Anka 1974 #1 classic (and duet with Odea Coates...I think that's how you spell her name)...but here, Cory/Finn does it solo, and it's a GREAT great version with great form from him...also see my take on "I'll Stand By You"...this song is one of my fave guilty pleasures of all time, and now I feel it's just a great song, period...it was moving and funny on the show, where he expressed his love for Quinn and baby at her parents' place on a boombox...a twist on the "Say Anything" moment with Peter Gabriel's "In Your Eyes"...until her dad shut the music off when he figured out she was preggers.
7. Lean On Me (9/10)...nice duet by Kevin/Artie and Amber/Mercedes, of the Bill Withers classic covered in the 80s by Club Nouveau (both versions hit #1)...almost more gospelly and both are in great vocal form...Kevin/Artie could be today's best white soul singer, period...he should go on Daryl Hall's internet show "Live From Daryl's House" pronto.
8. Don't Make Me Over (10/10)...oh gosh, this is amazing...a fab take on that flawless Burt Bacharach/Hal David song popularized by Dionne Warwick...it was also a hit by a now-forgotten R&B singer named Sybil, and many notable others like Neil Diamond & Petula Clark recorded it too...wow, Amber/Mercedes did a glorious take on this and showcased how great she really is...I'd buy her own records pronto...I wouldn't be surprised if Burt HIMSELF proclaimed this to be his fave version of his song...seriously.
9. Imagine (10/10)...GREAT version of the John Lennon classic...and I'm sure Yoko Ono would have had to approve...no, it's not that moving version on the show with the deaf choir...honestly tho, that version only worked in the show, this studio version is better on the record, as the deaf element was tuneless (that person couldn't help it) and would only distract...like the part of "Don't Stop Belivin'" at the sectionals, where they didn't even SHOW the deaf kid singing, just the audio and Lea/Rachel yelling to the other New Directions "meeting in 5 minutes NOW" in the audience after realizing their setlist was stolen & leaked...and that deaf version of DTB was awful and embarrassing...it would have sounded that way on record if the deaf "Imagine" was included instead of this superior studio version...just sayin'.
10. True Colors (10/10)...unbelievable version of the Steinberg/Kelly song popularized by Cyndi Lauper as a #1 hit in 1986...by Jenna Ushkowitz/Tina, and we finally get a solo from her, and she's amazing...she really feels the heartfelt support & empathetic heart of the song and does a great take, with great uplifting choruses by the Glee Cast...a true highlight of the whole CD...and this even rivals Cyndi's version...plus it blows away Phil Collin's lame limp version from 10 years ago, easily.
11. Jump (10/10)...this volume's "Don't Stop Believin'"...in that the Glee Cast revitalize and freshen up a huge cheesy hit 80s rock song which I hated back then and love their version...in this case, it's Van Halen's 1984 #1 hit "Jump" from 1983's album "1984"...don't ask...the cast adds bright colours here, add fresh energy, and like on STB, they replace the keyboard lines with Ba Ba Bababa's...and they seem to have fun with the song...it's truly infectious...love it.
12. Smile (Cover of Lily Allen Song) (8/10)...now, this is interesting...a cover of Brit bird Lily Allen's recent track "Smile", done by Lea/Rachel with harmony by Cory/Finn...and at first, I was like oh no cuz Lily and the song are both VERY English, and Rachel & the show are anything but, and at first listen, it sounded like Rachel's vocal was a Lily imitation, a very affected vocal, with a fake British accent...but after a second listen, that wasn't the case, and Cory/Finn's light harmony adds a different element to the song that wasn't on Lily's original, so they pass my test here...but just barely scraping by.
13. Smile (Cover of Charlie Chaplin Song) (10/10)...interesting, 2 "Smile" songs in a row...I missed last week's episode, where Will finds out about Terri faking her pregnancy (due to DVR error)...did this song and Lily's play into this plot twist?? Anyhoo, this was originally done by Charlie Chaplin...yep, the 20s/30s silent movie comic genius...like, who knew?? And it's a soulful song that uses the idea of comedy making you smile & laugh used to make you feel better when you're sad and depressed...so it has deep meaning...it was the late Michael Jackson's alltime fave song...and as a song, it's just beautiful & really soulful & timeless...it works great here acoustically and underplayed by the cast with real sensitivity and empathy...really, this song could be arranged as an alternative, atmospheric, modern rock ballad as well.
14. And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going (10/10)...yep, the "Dreamgirls" showstopper, done previously by Jennifer Holliday in the play and former Idol contestant Jennifer Hudson in the movie version where she won an Oscar, here Amber/Mercedes adds a rawness never before displayed...it is a little TOO much over-the-top for my taste, but it showcases how great a singer she really is...along with "Don't Make Me Over", which was better in my eyes, but this is still pretty grand.
15. Don't Rain On My Parade (9/10)...yep the "Funny Girl" song, previously done by Barbra Streisand...the other side of the vocal coin for Lea/Rachel, she does these types of Broadway showtune songs equally as well as the straight-up commercial pop ones...and this was tailormade for her...the first of 2 songs performed in the sectionals on the show.
16. You Can't Always Get What You Want (10/10)...yep, the Rolling Stones' classic from 1969, and it's a brilliant choice, as if you know the original, it starts off with a children's choir, so it makes sense, plus the title of the song plays into the plot where Matt/Will gives Cory/Finn the peptalk and that they needed him at the sectionals, and he should temporarily get past his battles with Puck & Quinn...this is awesome on record, and uplifting on the show...love the audience getting into it...GREAT version and Mick & Keith would be VERY proud...the cast injects fresh blood here too...LOVE it.
17. My Life Would Suck Without You (10/10)...virtually identical to Kelly Clarkson's recent #1 version, which was awesome, and it was clever how the lyrics played into the show, the club's love & appreciation for Matt/Will, as well as his now-not-secret love for Jayma/Emma...a perfect ending.
Now, time for the DVD!!!
In a way, subliminally, is this volume a tribute to Michael Jackson?? You have his fave song "Smile" (Charlie Chaplin's), Paul Anka's "You're Having My Baby" (he wrote with him "This Is It" back in 1983), and Van Halen's "Jump" (as Eddie VH played the lead guitar solo on "Beat It")...is this just coincidence or am I just reading too much into this??? Just sayin...it's a GREAT volume and it could be my fave of the two...let's see how future volumes stack up to this one."
Review of "Glee: The Music, Volume 2"
Antoine D. Reid | Durham, NC United States | 12/08/2009
(3 out of 5 stars)
"'Glee: The Music, Vol. 2' features 17 more songs from the first season. These are in addition to those released on Glee: The Music, Volume 1. One point of criticism right off hand; the songs featured on vol. 2 aren't as catchy and varied as those on the first volume of music. While volume 1 had songs that were very pop and upbeat, vol. 2 is heavy on songs that are a bit less pop and more on the melodramatic/slightly depressing side. As with the first volume, this doesn't include all of the songs from the 2nd quarter of the season. Missing are the tracks performed by the non-'Glee' cast, like 'Bootylicious', or the acoustic version of 'Papa Don't Preach', or the 'Hair / Crazy in Love' mash-up. While the songs on volume 2 are definitely good and are performed well above the typical cover/karaoke standard, the songs selected for this release are good but a bit similar and tame.
The Good: There are a few stand-out performances that I'm glad made it onto the release. "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going" performed by Amber Riley is truly one of the stand-out songs of the season this far. Riley always comes through with a big voice that one would not expect from her. While she may not get many scenes or episodes where the spotlight is on her, her voice is probably one of the best among the cast. Some of the best tracks are those that actually feature the entire cast rather than solo or duet performances (after all, the whole concept of a glee club is a group making music, right?). "Jump" and "Lean On Me" stand out as some of the best group performances, while "Endless Love" and "Smile (Charlie Chaplin Cover)" stand out as the best duets/smaller group performances. If anything, I felt volume 2 was a bit more balanced than the first volume that was heavy on Lea Michele's performances.
The Bad: Some of the songs were better within the context of the show. Stand alone, or perhaps without having seen the episode and situation that prompted the song, makes some of these songs have less of an impact. "I'll Stand By You" and "(You're) Having My Baby" are good examples of this; these are all parts of big arcs and ongoing plots in the show and are much more than just a cover of these big classics. "Proud Mary" is good, but it was a big number that came after an episode focusing on wheel-chair bound Artie (another underdeveloped character of the show along with Mercedes). As stated earlier, these songs reflect the serious nature and plots of the second quarter of the season and so they're a little less pop and upbeat and more rooted in the Glee club not fully accepting or embracing their status in the school (the subject of the two "Smile" songs), or teenage pregnancy ("(You're) Having My Baby", "I'll Stand By You") or the humorous plot involving a student crush on her teacher ("Don't Stand So Close To Me/Young Girl", "Endless Love", "Crush"). I wish it had been a tad bit more expansive to include some of the performances like "Bootylicious" to add some upbeat/fun moments, but that's a minor critique.
In all, a good release. Yes, a lot of these songs are 'cover' versions of popular artists' music but unlike all of these reality shows featuring horrid, lackluster karaoke performances, Glee really steps it up on most of their music to do justice to the music. If you're a fan of the show and haven't been downloading the tracks as they've been released each week by FOX, this is a great opportunity to get a majority of the performances all collected in a set. Check out Glee:The Music, vol. 1 as well for even more great music from the show.
Listen To These: "I'll Stand By You", "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going", "Lean On Me", "Smile (Cover of Charlie Chaplin Song)""
There's a reason this is selling well--THAT MUSIC !!!
Matthew G. Sherwin | last seen screaming at Amazon customer service | 12/08/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This new "Volume 2" album of the music from Glee contains some mighty special music. These fine artists harmonize and sing lyrics to perfection--and beyond! Sure, there's one or two tracks here that may be not quite as good as others; but the rest of what we get is so remarkably good that I'll be holding onto this CD for quite some while to come! The quality of the sound is good and I like the artwork; we also get credits in the liner notes that list who sings which number.
"Proud Mary" by John Fogerty starts the track set off with a strong number. Amber Riley impresses me with her fine singing; and Amber along with Kevin McHale, Lea Michele and Jenna Ushkowitz handle complex tempo and key changes like champs! That chorus is vibrant to say the least; and how's about that brass? "Endless Love" is performed with great sensitivity by Mathew Morrison and Lea Michele; the music fits perfectly with their vocals and they never miss a beat, either! Moreover, "I'll Stand by You" moves me with its natural beauty.
Listen for yet another gem in their rendition of "Lean on Me;" Kevin McHale and Amber Riley never let go of a single superfluous note and the backup singers enhance the beauty of this classic tune. Their excellent diction enhances their performance, too; and they do "Lean on Me" with lots of terrific energy. "Don't Make Me Over" is sung by Amber Riley and it just couldn't be better while "Imagine" gets a most sensitive treatment by Amber Riley, Kevin McHale, Cory Monteith and Lea Michele.
Another electric tune is definitely "Jump" which is performed by Cory Monteith, Lea Michele, Kevin McHale and Amber Riley. I love it! There's also a sweet cover of Charlie Chaplin's "Smile;" Lea Michele, Cory Monteith and Amber Riley perform this with panache and this cover leaves nothing to be desired--this music is all THAT good. I would like to think that Charlie Chaplin would have approved of their rendition of this song! Amber Riley also scores one of the best performances on the entire CD when she delivers "And I'm Telling You I'm Not Going" from "Dreamgirls." Amber Riley has a bright future; I am sure of it!
Other fine songs include "Don't Rain on My Parade" from "Funny Girl" sung by Lea Michele; the big band arrangement works well for this number and Lea swings brightly to make this one shine bright! "You Can't Always Have What You Want" is another fine cover of a Rolling Stones classic tune by Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, Kevin McHale and Amber Riley.
Of course, there's always one or two tracks on a CD that don't grab me as much as others do. "Don't Stand So Close To Me/Young Girl" is very good but not quite great in my opinion; and "Crush" as performed by Lea Michele is also very good but not quite great. Of course, there's no "right" or "wrong" here; listen to these songs for yourself and decide--maybe you will love them completely.
Overall, there's a good reason that this CD is selling well as I write this; this album has a lot of excellent music and that's grand. I highly recommend it for fans of the TV show Glee; but even people who have never watched the show will want to get this for their collections if they like pop.