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Music Review: Glee Cast – “Born This Way”

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This week’s music from Glee was quite the eclectic mix, but supplied the perfect soundtrack for the “Born This Way” episode.

Glee really brought it with the music this week. I truly enjoyed every track, but the absolute standout for me was the mash-up of West Side Story’s “I’m Pretty” with TLC’s “Unpretty,” which was sung by Lea Michele (Rachel) and Dianna Agron (Quinn). GLEE: Lauren (Ashley Fink, L), Kurt (Chris Colfer, second from L) and Mike (Harry Shum, R) perform for Rachel (Leah Michele, third from L) in the super-sized 90 minute "Born This Way" episode of GLEE airing Tuesday, April 26 (8:00-9:30 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2011 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Adam Rose/FOXBroadcasting Co. CR: Adam Rose/FOX

I usually am not a huge fan of Agron’s vocals, but this mash-up really worked for her. “Unpretty” needs a soft and vulnerable vocal to make it work, and I thought she pulled it off well. I really enjoyed the contrast of her voice with Michele’s and the interchanging “I feel pretty” lines. Both ladies sound fantastic, and it was nice to hear a duet from them.

Cory Monteith (Finn) took on Sammy Davis Jr.’s “I’ve Gotta Be Me.” After listening to this track, I found this to be the best that Monteith has sounded vocally all season. It’s a very clean vocal from him, and his personality is infused throughout the song. I was taken aback a little bit when I saw this song on the track listing this week, but after seeing the episode last night, I concluded that the song was a great choice for not only Monteith’s voice, but the overall theme of the “Born This Way” episode.

One of my very favorite songs, “Somewhere Only We Know” by Keane, was sung by Darren Criss (Blaine) and the Dalton Academy Warblers. Seriously, what can’t this dude sing? Criss has a way of emotionally connecting to every song that he sings. With “Somewhere Only We Know,” the listening audience gets to hear a very vulnerable and sincere vocal performance from him. I definitely think Glee did this song justice. And of course, shout out to the Tufts University Beelzebubs for the great backing vocals.

Chris Colfer (Kurt) returns to the solo spotlight with “As If We Never Said Goodbye” from Broadway’s Sunset Boulevard. Colfer’s vocals on this track are just stunning. The track is truly just absolute ear candy. I am hoping since Colfer’s character has now returned to the New Directions that we will be treated to a couple more solos before the season’s end.

When I found out that Glee was planning on using Lady Gaga’s “Born This Way” for this episode, I thought the song was just too new to utilize for the show. But, what do I know anyway, since this song fit this week’s episode like a glove. With Colfer, Amber Riley (Mercedes), and Jenna Ushkowitz (Tina) on lead vocals, Gaga’s “Born This Way” was hit with a dose of attitude and sass—Glee-style. I am all for uptempo group numbers, and “Born This Way” delivers in a big way.

I think this week’s bundle of Glee music may just be the best of the season, or at least a close second after the music from the episode “Never Been Kissed.” Hats off to Glee’s music producers and music supervisors; the song choices and overall production were very much on point this week.

The music from “Born This Way” is available now on iTunes.

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

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About Kirsten Coachman

Kirsten Coachman is an Entertainment Writer from the San Francisco Bay Area. She has interviewed a variety of people from across the entertainment spectrum, including singer-songwriter/Matchbox Twenty frontman Rob Thomas, Andrew Dost from the Grammy Award-winning band fun., singer-songwriter Christina Perri, and acclaimed writer-director Derek Cianfrance.
  • Eleanor

    Good observations about the Born This Way episode and songs. I loved the episode, song choices, and plot developments. It was inspiring and fun stuff.