Here Comes The Sun: A Reggae Tribute To The Beatles

Various Artists

Madacy Entertainment, 2002

REVIEW BY: Duke Egbert


You know, CDs like this are why it's always a trip to visit my mailbox.

I didn't request this CD. I'm not even sure where it came from, to be frank. But it showed up in my mail (along with a couple of other reggae CDs that may show up some time later here on the old DV), I looked at it, shrugged, went 'what the hell?' and popped it into the CD player. I don't know reggae from Gregorian chants, I'm a white guy who lives in Indiana, but I firmly believe in being adventurous now and then.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Surprisingly, Here Comes The Sun isn't too damn bad. It's not something I would listen to every day, but it was a nice change from my normal diet of progressive rock, '80s pop, and roots acoustic music. Reggae has the advantage of being catchy, and if you mix it with Beatles tunes (which are catchy in and of themselves; those Number One hits weren't accidents) you get something highly listenable.

For being a small-label release, the production and engineering is fine. (I consider it a sign of civilization that more and more, it's becoming hard to find a bad-sounding CD. Badly performed, yes. Bad sounding, no.) The liner notes are non-existent; I would have liked to have known more about who these artists were. (I can recognize Bob Marley and Peter Tosh. That's about it, folks, and neither of them were represented on this CD, so I was out of my depth.)

There are some really good tracks on this CD, though. Lehbanchleh's version of "Something" was really delightful, as was Steel Pulse's "We Can Work It Out". Hugh J's take on "She Loves You" turned it into a completely different song, in and of itself quite an achievement. Chalice added serene depth to "Imagine", Wayne Armond turned "Norwegian Wood" into something more upbeat, and Fiona's version of "Let It Be" was surprisingly original. (I found it astonishing how much of a change a female vocalist was.) As a matter of fact, Here Comes The Sun does what few tribute CDs manage; it honors the original songs while still doing something different with them. Great cover songs aren't note for note; they do something new with the song while still honoring the original intention. (Maybe it's time for that "My Ten Favorite Cover Versions" feature. Hmn.)

In final summary, even a couple of weak tracks (I wasn't crazy about Toots and the Maytals' "Hey Jude" or Mello's "In My Life") can't ruin the fact that Here Comes The Sun is a lot of fun. Check it out.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2002 Duke Egbert and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Madacy Entertainment, and is used for informational purposes only.