Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs
Under the Covers Vol. 2
Jul 28, 2009 Web Exclusive
After addressing the '60s on Under the Covers Vol. 1, Matthew Sweet and Susanna Hoffs direct their musical tribute to the '70s on Vol. 2. Like Vol. 1, this album features able renditions of classic tracks from Grateful Dead ("Sugar Magnolia"), John Lennon ("Gimme Some Truth"), Big Star ("Back of a Car"), Rod Stewart ("Maggie May"), Todd Rundgren ("Hello It's Me" and "Couldn't I Just Tell You"), and a slew of others. Notably, Lindsey Buckingham provides guitar on Fleetwood Mac's "Second Hand News," and Steve Howe recreates his memorable riff on Yes' "I've Seen All Good People: Your Move/All Good People." George Harrison's son Dhani even plays guitar on his dad's "Beware of Darkness."
As for the album as a whole, Sweet and Hoffs are consummate professionals and they dutifully bring their best; however, they have yet to answer the question of why one should listen to their versions instead of the originals. These songs are timeless, but the covers are paint-by-numbers recreations. A couple of tracks bring a new energy: Sweet's singing on David Bowie's "All the Young Dudes" is full of inspiration and vigor, and the shared vocals on Carly Simon's "You're So Vain" remind that this song is better than you remember it to be. But, more than anything, what these tracks do is make one want to listen to the originals. (www.shoutfactory.com)
Author rating: 5/10
Average reader rating: 8/10