Glee is one of those television programs which people either love or hate. No matter what you think of the show, it is hard to deny the talent of the young performers. Glee: The Music: Season 4, Volume 1 showcases 13 numbers from various members of the Glee cast. Of course, all of these songs have been hits for other people. They cover a variety of styles, but all of them are slick numbers and they make very enjoyable listening.
There are many highlights on the CD. Melissa Benoist, who plays Marley Rose, and Lea Michele, who plays Rachel Berry, do an excellent job on Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind.” Benoist also shines with Becca Tobin, who plays Kitty Wilde, on “Holding Out for a Hero.” Tobin performs wonderfully as well with Jacob Artist, who plays Jake Puckerman, on “Everybody Talks.”
Darren Criss and Chord Overstreet, who play Blaine Anderson and Sam Evans (respectively), bring real feeling to David Bowie’s “Heroes.” Nolan Gerard Funk, who was Hunter Clarrington on three episodes, and Grant Gustin, who was Sebastian Smythe, have fun with “Live While We’re Young.”
Perhaps the strongest standouts are the cover of Coldplay’s “The Scientist,” performed by most of the main cast, and the really moving medley of “Homeward Bound/Home.” The fact that Simon and Garfunkel’s song would fit so well with Mumford and Sons’ is a delightful surprise. The song is also done by multiple cast members, and really highlights the ability of these artists to perform together.That is the main reason the show works so well.
The only song which really does not fit here is “Gangnam Style,” which is so inexplicably popular that its inclusion was probably inevitable. It simply sounds like a waste of talent here. This reviewer has not seen that episode of the show yet. Perhaps it looked better on the television screen than it sounds on the CD.
Overall however, this CD is very entertaining and would make a perfect gift or any fan of the show.