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Music Review: Glee Cast: “Comeback”

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I currently have the lyrics to Justin Bieber’s hit song, “Baby” playing on a loop in my head.

“Baby, baby, baby ooh…baby, baby, baby ooh…baby, baby, baby ooh…”

Not cool, Glee. Not cool at all.

I have seen The Biebs perform on TV a couple of times, but never bothered to sit down and listen to his music. I had my own Justin Bieber when I was 16, but his name was Brian Littrell and he was a Backstreet Boy.

When I initially heard that Glee would be getting Bieber-friendly, I must admit that I cringed. Upon remembering that this show is set in high school, and that Bieber is pretty much “the dude” right now, it then made sense that the kids in glee club would like his music.

So, how was Glee’s take on Bieber? Not bad, actually. I can’t even believe I’m about to say this, but after taking a listen to the lyrics and the melody, I have come to realize that Bieber has well-written and catchy tunes. This would be why the chorus to “Baby” has not left my brain.

GLEE: Sam (Chord Overstreet, R) starts a tribute band with Mike (Harry Shum Jr., L), Puck (Mark Salling, second from L) and Artie (Kevin McHale, third from L) in the "Comeback" episode of GLEE airing Tuesday, Feb. 15 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX. ©2011 Fox Broadcasting Co. CR: Adam Rose/FOXChord Overstreet (Sam) sings The Bieb’s enormous hit, “Baby,” and I think pop music is definitely his niche. He isn’t the strongest male singer in the cast, but Glee’s “Blond Bieber” does quite well for himself on this song.

I wasn’t surprised at all to hear Kevin McHale (Artie) doing the rap breakdown in the song. He proves again that he can flow pretty well.

Overstreet, McHale, Mark Salling (Puck), and Harry Shum Jr. (Mike) perform Bieber’s “Somebody To Love.” I have come to the conclusion that when the Glee guys are rocking a pop song, they sound at the top of their game.

Thinking back to the “Free Your Mind”/”Stop! (In The Name of Love)” mash-up that the Glee guys recorded earlier in the season, that is probably the best they’ve ever sounded. I think they dip into that magic again with “Somebody To Love.” All of the guys’ vocals gel nicely, although none of them really stood out during the solos.

Ashley Fink (Lauren) makes her Glee music debut this week, singing The Waitresses’ “I Know What Boys Like.” I think the song tied in well to her character’s storyline. Her voice was pretty monotone during the song, but it still kind of worked. I would like to see the show give Fink a song that has a little more range, so we can see what her vocals are truly made of.

In an unexpected twist, Glee’s New Directions took on My Chemical Romance’s “Sing” this week. It’s nice to hear Lea Michele (Rachel) and Cory Monteith (Finn) singing leads together again. I think their voices complement each others’ so well. Plus, it seems like it has been awhile since they have taken the reins on a song together.

Lyrically, I hate to say it, but “Sing” is pretty cheesy. I understand the sentiment behind it, and it is kind of an anthem for this glee club, although it’s still pretty cheese-tastic, even for them.

I think the best track of the week was “Take Me or Leave Me” from Rent, which was a duet between Michele and Amber Riley. In case you haven’t gotten the memo, these girls can sing. “Take Me or Leave Me” showcases the best that both Michele and Riley have to offer. In addition to having fantastic individual vocal performances, the ladies’ voices blend beautifully together. Michele nails a huge glory note in the middle of the song, which slightly gives her the edge over Riley in this duet.

Overall, I thought this was an interesting mix of music for this week’s episode of Glee. Some hits, some slight misses, but not too shabby this week.

The five tracks from Glee’s latest episode “Comeback” are available on iTunes now.

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.