"Rave On Buddy Holly" Tribute Album Offers Upbeat Tunes
Even if you’re skeptical about the concept, take a break from the dance beats you’re used to hearing on the radio these days and listen to a musical tribute to the man who coined the term, “Rave On,” decades before the Electric Daisy Carnival or “Hard Halloween” even existed.
“Rave on Buddy Holly,” a tribute album celebrating the life and talent of the legendary rock icon for what would have been his 75th birthday, offers an upbeat and refreshingly diverse listening experience; a product of timeless melodies and lyrics met with a thoroughly modern sound.
The album features covers of Holly’s most memorable songs performed by contemporary artists such as Cee Lo Green, Paul McCartney, The Black Keys, Modest Mouse and Florence + The Machine.
The musicians take Holly’s masterpieces and make them their own, providing for a unique and artistically distinguished final product. As a whole, “Rave on Buddy Holly” is a success, and as long as you have some sort of appreciation for the golden oldies, it is an album worth downloading.
However, the album is by no means perfect. While it is impossible not to acknowledge “Rave On” for its originality, a few of the covers just don’t quite work.
Modest Mouse, for example, does not even come close to doing justice to Holly’s most legendary hit, “That’ll be the Day.” They attempt to slow the whole song down, which gives it a depressing, melancholy vibe that strays much too far from the rock ’n’ roll sound of the original.
Even Julian Casablancas’ rendition of the album’s title song, “Rave On,” is less than memorable, although Casablancas’ vocals do sound remarkably like that of Holly himself.
There are also some strange moments in Paul McCartney’s “It’s so easy,” namely his obnoxious screaming towards the end of the song. Without this element, however, the song would have been pretty great for the most part.
Despite a few of these missteps, the majority of the songs on “Rave On” are truly exceptional.
Stand-outs are, to name a few, “Dearest” by the Black Keys, “Everyday,” performed by Fiona Apple and Jon Brion, and Cee Lo Green’s rendition of “Baby I Don’t Care.” These artists manage to stay true to the original while adding their own, signature touch to the song, exemplifying what it means to perform a successful “cover.”
Cee Lo especially does an excellent job of implementing his notorious soulful sound in “Baby I Don’t Care,” making it extremely resonant with both older and younger generations.
The Black Keys’ “Dearest” features outstanding vocals accompanied by a catchy beat, while “Everyday,” has an element of classic romance created by Fiona Apple’s famously delicate voice.
As a whole, “Rave On” Buddy Holly is a worthy tribute to the deceased music icon. The album definitely proves that while Buddy Holly may have died young, his artistic legacy is still relevant as ever to the musical world.
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