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Music Review : Glee Cast – “The Sue Sylvester Bowl Shuffle”

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Glee returns this Sunday for a special episode that’s airing right after Super Bowl XLV. This new episode contains four brand new tracks from the Glee Cast.

Lea Michele (Rachel) and Mark Salling (Puck) duet on the popular Lady Antebellum song, “Need You Now.” I have always wanted to hear these two sing a duet together, so it is such a treat to have it happen. The two singers were given a great track to sing, that fits pretty perfectly with their ongoing storyline.

I really liked that Michele and Salling didn’t try to do carbon copies of the original vocals for this track. Michele has a beautiful voice for ballads. I feel like sometimes she does struggle with the more contemporary tracks, but “Need You Now” fits her voice like a glove. Salling really adapts his voice well for this track, and really shows a softer side of his vocals that the audience doesn’t hear too often from him. Singing together on the chorus, both singers sound fantastic. The singers’ vocals compliment each other, and have personally left me wanting another duet from them. New Directions performing "Thriller / Heads Will Roll."

I think Cory Monteith sounds good on lead vocals on the Glee version of The Zombies’ “She’s Not There.” The tone of his voice was really nice. However, during the chorus with all the guys from New Directions singing together, I felt like I was being yelled at. That doesn’t work for me. I don’t want to sing-a-long when I feel that I am being yelled at.

In the upcoming episode, we once again hear from Dalton Academy’s Warblers who sing Destiny’s Child hit song, “Bills, Bills, Bills.” The song features cast member Darren Criss (Blaine) on lead vocals.

Criss is showing some vocal versatility on his part with this track. If you’ve listened to his EP, you kind have the idea that he’s more of a folk-pop singer. He really embraced the spirit of this track and infused the attitude of the lyrics into his vocal. I really liked hearing Criss on an R&B track, because it allowed him to show a more soulful side to his voice.

I also have to give mention to the very talented singers, the Beelzebubs from Tufts University, who play The Warblers. Their a cappella skills are like none other that I’ve heard in a while. I think they did a phenomenal job on the backing vocals for “Bills, Bills, Bills.”

I have to say when I first heard about Glee mashing up Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” with the Yeah Yeah Yeahs “Heads Will Roll” I was wee bit concerned about what the final product would sound like. It is one thing to do Michael Jackson, but to mash-up one of his iconic songs with a contemporary band is quite another.

However, upon hearing the much talked about mash-up, I must say that I was pleasantly surprised. Kevin McHale (Artie) does a fantastic job on lead vocals for “Thriller.” Collectively, the cast sounds great. I could have done without Naya Rivera’s vocals that were highlighted during the song. The parts she was singing were more suited for Amber Riley. Overall, I think the song was well produced, and it was nice to hear Glee put their spin on a classic song.

Give or take one song, I think that the songs from the upcoming episode of Glee are pretty great. The song choices were solid picks and worked well with the singer’s voices.

The four songs from “The Sue Sylvester Bowl Shuffle” are available on iTunes now.

Glee returns at a special time after Super Bowl XLV at 10:30 ET/ 7:30 PT this Sunday, February 6 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.
  • Frank

    Lea doesn’t stuggle with anything. They are limited her by making he stick to the orignals on pop songs.