Music Review >> Glee Cast – “Mash Off”

Among my favorite moments in each season of Glee have been the episodes that highlight song mash-ups. This season’s mash-ups for the most part lived up to their predecessors and one particular track stood out as probably the best mash-up Glee has ever done.

In an episode chock full of medleys, Mark Salling’s (Puck) take on Van Halen’s “Hot For Teacher” was the only solo track. I don’t think Salling gets enough credit for his vocal versatility. He showed a more vulnerable side of his voice earlier this season on a Foreigner track and, this week, we got to hear more depth and fullness in his singing. I think this was one of the better vocal performances we’ve gotten from him, actually. Cory Monteith (Finn) could also be heard on the track, and his voice pairs nicely with Salling’s.

On to the mash-ups, Idina Menzel (Shelby) and Matthew Morrison (Will) sang a medley Lady Gaga’s “You And I” and the Eddie Rabbitt/Crystal Gayle duet “You And I.” On paper, one wouldn’t think this could work, but surprisingly it does. I’m not sure that I’m quite sold on the pairing of Menzel and Morrison as duet partners, however. That said, I liked that Menzel had the bulk of the mash-up, because she really redeemed herself from season one’s recording of Gaga’s “Poker Face,” of which I was never a huge fan. Overall, I found the double dose of “You And I” to be a success.

Continue reading Music Review >> Glee Cast – “Mash Off”

Music Review >> Music From ‘Glee,’ Episode 2×6 “Never Been Kissed”

The four songs featured in this week’s episode of Glee pack quite the musical punch.

Diving into the tracks this week, the weakest is definitely the duet between Mark Salling (Puck) and Kevin McHale (Artie) on Bob Marley’s “One Love (People Get Ready).” This song really doesn’t fit Salling’s voice, although when harmonizing with McHale, he sounded pretty good. It definitely wasn’t as good as the other three songs from this week’s episode.

Hands down my favorite track this week was Dalton Academy’s version of Katy Perry’s huge hit, “Teenage Dream.” The song features lead vocals from Glee newcomer, Darren Criss (Blaine). This is a song that I wouldn’t expect to hear covered by a guy, but I thought Glee’s interpretation was wonderful.

The arrangement for this song is great. Replacing instruments with harmonizing does not go unnoticed. The harmonizing is a huge part about what makes Glee’s take on “Teenage Dream” so successful.

I really enjoy Criss’ voice. His voice is a great addition to the cast this season, and I hope that the audience gets to hear more from him.

Onto the mash ups! The Glee girls performed a mash up of the Rolling Stones’ “Start Me Up” and Bon Jovi’s “Livin’ On A Prayer.”

Amber Riley (Mercedes) took the lead on “Start Me Up.” Her vocal provided a saucy and provocative interpretation of the song.

Lea Michele (Rachel) was the featured singer on “Livin’ On A Prayer.” Michele is able to adapt her voice nicely to the song. To really pull off that song’s chorus, you need a booming, powerful vocal. Michele pulled it off without a hitch.

Both of these songs made for quite the rockin’ mash up.

It also occurred to me while listening to this week’s music that last season on Glee, the guys incorporated a Bon Jovi song into their mash up. I wonder if it’s just pure coincidence, or luck in Bon Jovi’s case, that their new greatest hits album just happened to come out the same week one of their biggest hits was covered on Glee.  I thought that was interesting.

The Glee guys did a mash up of The Supremes “Stop! In The Name of Love” and EnVogue’s “Free Your Mind.”

Now, I really like both of the mash ups, but what gives the guys the edge for me is that almost every single one of them is featured as a lead vocal throughout their mash up. Also, these songs brought the best out of the guys (vocally speaking) and collectively they sounded great.

This mash up is definitely a fun listen. Who knew that two songs that are so different musically and lyrically could fit so well together?

I have to say that whoever is responsible for putting together the arrangements for this week’s crop of songs did an incredible job. Glee definitely had a good music week.

Glee airs Tuesday nights on FOX at 8 p.m.

Originally posted on BlogCritics.