Glee: The Music, Volume 1 (2009) You're no one in TV these days, it seems, without your own soundtrack — and a little boldfaced bait, whether it be a folk-rock icon… 2009-11-03 Various Artists Soundtracks
Music Review

Glee: The Music, Volume 1 (2009)

Glee | HOLD ON TO THAT FEELING The cast of Glee
Image credit: Carin Baer/FOX
HOLD ON TO THAT FEELING The cast of Glee
EW's GRADE
B

Details Release Date: Nov 03, 2009; Lead Performance: Various Artists; Genre: Soundtracks

You're no one in TV these days, it seems, without your own soundtrack — and a little boldfaced bait, whether it be a folk-rock icon or the umpteenth revival of a deathless '80s power ballad.

NCIS: The Official TV Soundtrack, Vol. 2 begins, wisely, with its big get: Bob Dylan's previously unreleased ''California,'' a wry vagabond lament dating from his 1965 Bringing It All Back Home sessions. Norah Jones practically purrs on the surprisingly sexy R&B shuffle ''That's What I Said,'' and Sheryl Crow, John Mellencamp, and show star Michael Weatherly follow with earthy, solid originals for the adult-contemporary set. Earnest Aussie rockers Sick Puppies and lite-metal angsters Saosin, alas, feel much more CW than CBS.

In fact, they could have escaped from the teen-targeted Soundtrack 90210, a collection of enjoyable-enough throwaways from MTV second-stringers (the All-American Rejects, OK Go, Jet) and mall-alt upstarts (Owl City, the Red Jumpsuit Apparatus) alike. More than a few years out of homeroom? Stay for Adele's pairing with the Raconteurs, the aching blues-waltz torcher ''Many Shades of Black.''

Glee: The Music, Volume 1 trucks in no such darkness. The show's subversive wit is confined to the areas outside its unapologetically sincere musical numbers: Broadway-baby takes on both Velveeta rock ballads (Journey's ''Don't Stop Believin','' REO Speedwagon's ''Can't Fight This Feeling'') and more recent pop hits (Rihanna's ''Take a Bow,'' Kanye West's ''Gold Digger''). In context, it all has a giddy sort of ''let's put on a show'' charm; 
 on record, it's basically fancy (albeit fun) 
 karaoke. NCIS: B 90210: B– Glee: B

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Originally posted Oct 21, 2009 Published in issue #1073 Oct 30, 2009 Order article reprints