Category Archives: Glee

Some Thoughts on Glee’s Season 1, Volume 1: “Road to Sectionals”

While it might seem that I have been remiss in my Glee-reviewing duties, I actually have been diligently doing my homework and going through the first half of Season 1 (I’m hoping to make both Chelsea and Bukem proud). I have to say, it’s quite different from when I started watching the show, and that in itself was reason enough for this short post.

While I did like the second half of Season 1, I like the format of the first half a whole lot better. Rather than an obvious lesson every week the second half was heavily reliant on, the first half of the season focuses a lot more on High School life, be it as a student or as part of the staff. The reflections on the episodes of the first half of Season 1 I had with fellow Glee watchers were a lot deeper than the ones based on the second half of the season. The reason we felt is quite simple: rather than have Mr. Shu point out the sometimes very obvious, we had to dig a little more; working to define the themes rather than have them spoon-fed to us made us able to go a lot further.

The other reason has to do with the fact that none of us will ever be able to join a glee club of our own without insurance to cover all the glass we are going to break. But that’s neither here or there.

Interestingly so, the songs thus were a whole lot more efficient in sharing the themes they were touching upon. In “Acafellas”, Will’s group chooses to perform Bell Biv Devoe’s song “Poison”, which makes you think immediately of his relationship with both Terri and Emma. In “The Rhodes not taken”, Glee Club’s rendition of Carrie Underwood’s “Last name” with April Rhodes as lead singer made the song all the more poignant. I found the Glee Club’s rendition of Avril Lavigne’s “Keep holding on” right after Quinn’s secret pregnancy was made public (by Sue!) a great moment too, as it seemed to define when the group started moving from club members to friends.

Of course, using the theme-per-episode that many of the episode from the second half of Glee’s first season was based on also has its pros, the most obvious of which being that each theme being extremely complex, it allows for depth in reflection on said topic.

Which leads me to believe that the best thing Glee writers could do for Seasons 2 & 3 would be to have a combination of both type of episodes scattered throughout.

Now that I am almost done with “Road to Sectionals”, stayed tuned for more reflections on the songs from the last episodes of Season 1 – and don’t forget to take a peek at Chelsea’s fantastic reviews!

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Glee, The Music, Volume 3 Showstoppers (Deluxe)

Straight on the heels of the best-selling Power of Madonna mini-album comes Showstoppers, the music to the second half of Glee’s first season. Now while some people might find Glee filled with cheesy clichés – and let’s be honest, it is – the cast members really know how to sing. Even if you don’t watch the show, this CD is worth listening to for the great remakes of some songs.

The songs in this album are all from the second half of the first season, except for the episodes “The Power of Madonna” and “Journey,” which each have their own mini-album (the first has been reviewed here, and stay tuned to this feature for the review of the other). The standard version of the album features 14 songs, while the deluxe edition contains an extra six songs: “A House Is Not A Home,” “Home” (featuring Kristin Chenoweth), “Rose’s Turn,” “Loser,” “Beth,” and “Poker Face” (featuring Idina Menzel). If you haven’t been buying songs on iTunes throughout the entire season and you love the Glee songs, then it might be worth it for you to indulge in the deluxe edition. As for the order of the songs, it’s pretty much chronological, except for the last five, as the songs from episode 21, “Loser” and “Give up the Funk,” precede that of episode 20, “Poker Face” and “Bad Romance.”

Now I have to admit that I liked the first half of the season better when it comes to plotline (and I’m curious to know what my fellow Glee reviewer has to say about this). But when it comes to music, both halves were amazing. One of my favourite performances from the second half of the season remains Lady Gaga’s “Bad Romance” (which is the 19th track on this album), what with the costumes and the attitude and the plot in that episode. But when it comes to emotional quotient, one of my favourite performances remains Kevin McHale’s “The Safety Dance” by Men Without Hats (which is the 14th track on this album); in the episode “Dream On,” Artie daydreams about leading a flash mob to said song. We find out that on top of being a great actor and singer, Kevin McHale is also a great dancer, which kind of makes me hope for another such daydream.

It seems like most of the songs chosen for this album went for emotional memories rather than performance value alone. On top of “The Safety Dance,” the album includes Amber Riley singing “Beautiful” by Christina Aguilera. The song was performed in the episode “Home” in which Coach Sylvester puts Mercedes on a diet and she faints in the school cafeteria. Quinn gives her advice on how she shouldn’t let the coach get to her and change the fact that she’s so comfortable in her own skin. On the day of the pep rally for which Mercedes has been put on a diet, she doesn’t perform the planned routine, instead singing this song.

Another such song is U2’s “One,” which ended the episode “Laryngitis.”  Just like Mercedes’ rendition of “Beautiful,” it’s another lesson in not defining oneself through any superficial quality. In the episode, Rachel is diagnosed with tonsillitis. Her doctor recommends that she have her tonsils removed, which Rachel fears will affect her voice and consequently negatively affect her singing. Finn introduces her to his friend Sean, whom a football accident rendered quadriplegic; he helps Rachel realise that there is a whole lot more to her than her singing, just like there is a whole lot more to him than his mobility.

There weren’t too many songs featuring Jonathan Groff (who portrays Jesse St. James), but there was one of the most powerful ones he sang, a duet with Lea Michele’s character, Rachel Berry. In the episode “Bad Reputation” Rachel thinks that by playing Puck, Finn, and Jesse one against the other, she will gain a bad reputation, which is an invaluable currency in high school. Unfortunately, all it succeeds in doing is to create a vast chasm between her and her boyfriend, Jesse, which is illustrated by their rendition of Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” Thankfully, another of his great performances, i.e. “Hello” by Lionel Richie, also made it on the album.

There are so many great songs that were performed during the second half of the season that it’s obvious not all could make it on this album (unless they had a two-disk deluxe deluxe version). There is one in particular that I really wish had made it: Puck, Finn, and Mercedes’ rendition of “Good Vibrations” from Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch. I guess I’ll just have to purchase the single on iTunes.

However the album does include a couple of songs with notable guest stars. Two of the most poignant songs performed by the amazing Kristin Chenoweth (who portrayed April Rhodes) are included: “One Less Bell to Answer/A House Is Not a Home” and “Home.” Two songs featuring the great Idina Menzel also made it on the album. The first is Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face” (albeit a slow, simplified and reflective version of it), and the second, the poignant “I Dreamed a Dream.”

The performance of two other guest stars also made it on the album, which includes Aerosmith’s “Dream On” featuring Neil Patrick Harris and Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical” featuring, well, herself.

Speaking of “Dream On,” I found an interesting piece of information while researching this review, the kind that makes random information aficionados very happy. Did you know that, according to Billboard, the rendition of “Dream On” by the Glee cast surpassed the original on the charts? While the former made it to number 26, the latter only peaked at number 59 when it was originally released in 1973.

If you like the show and haven’t purchased any of the singles on iTunes, this album is definitely a great addition to your music collection. But if you have already purchased your favourite songs, I’d recommend sticking to purchasing the albums for which there have not been any singles released. Either way, however cliché the plotline can get, the Glee cast continues to give one amazing performance after another, and make purchasing their songs worthwhile. However, I wouldn’t go so far as to recommend the CD; there aren’t any secret tracks, nor any special pictures or features in the CD booklet for you to spend the extra money.

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Songs from the Glee Episode “Laryngitis”

Glee’s 18th episode of Season 1 featured many songs, five of which are available as part of a digital bundle tied in with the episode: “Jessie’s Girl”, “The Lady Is a Tramp”, “The Boy Is Mine”, “Rose’s Turn” and “One”. These songs all have to do with the assignment Will gives the Glee club members for the week: to find a song that reflects who each of them is.

Finn’s choice of “Jessie’s Girl” was the most natural choice, as he has been pining over the unavailable Rachel for a couple of episodes now. Cory Monteith performance was pretty good, despite the fact that I don’t think his voice is not quite suited for this song and the fact that I didn’t think the silhouette of Rachel undressing behind a hospital curtain while he was singing it was appropriate, lending the song a trashy side. The fact that he accompanies himself on the drums is always a great touch, and, well, the face that the song is quite catchy makes up for the rather unsuited voice.

Speaking of unsuited voices, Kurt’s struggle with his father’s increasing closeness with Finn makes him pick a rather unusual song, i.e. John Mellamcamp’s “Pink Houses”. Just like the song doesn’t suit Kurt’s personality, the key doesn’t suit his voice at all. Of course, this is the whole point of him choosing this song: it underlines the point Will makes, that Kurt should not “lose track of who [he is] because it might be easier to be someone else.” I especially loved this particular subplot as it underlines the fact that just telling teenagers to “be who they really are and everything will be fine” is a ridiculously simplistic way of dealing with their extremely complex problems.

Unsurprisingly, this song didn’t make it on the digital bundle, but I still thought it deserved a nod, as Chris Colfer credit managed to pull it off very well despite it not suiting his vocal range. Thankfully, his character (Kurt) pours his anger and resentment into a song that really does represent how he feels with an amazing solo rendition of “Rose’s Turn”. To be honest, I first didn’t even get why he was singing it, I was so blown away by the performance. Chris Colfer continues to amaze me every single time he sings, and it took a second rewatch for me to realize just how well this song was suited for this particular subplot.

Someone who thinks he knows who he is but who is slowly being deconstructed is Puck. Poor Puck; first he gets a bad reputation (or a good one?) because he joins Glee, and now he lost his mohawk at the insistence of his mother, who sent him to a dermatologist to check on what she thought was a cancerous mole. Without that mohawk, Puck is no credible bully anymore. He decides to date the now-popular Mercedes (thanks for her recently joining the cheerleading squad) and now only has to convince her. So he decides to woo her by singing a duet of “This Lady is a Tramp” with her (which he refers to as Sammy Davis Jr’s biggest hit).

Mark Salling & Amber Riley’s rendition of “This Lady is a Tramp” is quite simply amazing. Mark Salling’s voice is extremely smooth and perfect for this song; he was also perfectly cast to play the role of smooth-talking Puck, which makes him all the more perfect to perform this song. And I won’t go again into how awesome Amber Riley’s voice is. On top of all of this, Mark Salling & Amber Riley’s voices meld very well together – no wonder Santana was furious at Mercedes!

Which leads the two girls into a sing-off, with the two of them performing “This Boy is Mine”. While Naya Rivera’s voice isn’t as powerful as Amber Riley’s, she sings beautifully, and this song is well suited to her voice (as well as Amber’s). Of course, the fact that both are great actresses and really get into it adds greatly to the performance.

The major plotline in this episode is of course Rachel’s tonsillitis. The threat of having her tonsils removed – which she worries could affect her singing – makes her fret throughout the episode about her identity: “Who am I without my voice?” she asks at one point. “I am my voice”, she insists a little later on. Finn takes her to see his friend Sean, who was paralyzed from the neck down after a football accident. Rachel comes to realize that, just like he isn’t solely defined by his mobility, she isn’t solely defined by her voice, and that both can move on without this important part of their personality. Of course Rachel’s voice comes back, and the episode finishes with the cast performing U2’s song “One”. I don’t think it needs to be said, that a strong song performed by a strong group of singers gives for an equally strong performance. Despite many less than stellar reviews of this episode, I find that it leaves viewers feeling light hearted and inspired, just like Glee is meant to.

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Songs from the Glee Episode “Dream On”

Six words to start off this review: Neil Patrick Harris as Bryan Ryan. Wasn’t he great? I do hope his character has a reason to make another appearance on Glee, if only to sing a second duet between his character and Will Schuester.

In “Dream On”, Will has to face yet another Glee club enemy, this time in the form of Bryan Ryan is a former embittered Glee club star who now works as a school board auditor and uses his authority to threaten to cut Glee club out of the school’s artistic budget. It seems that, not having succeeded in attaining his own dreams of making it big in the show business world, he is now intent on shattering the hopes and dreams of Glee club members everywhere he can.

While the episode features many performances, as usual only some made it to the digital bundle (available for purchase on iTunes). More specifically, only “Dream a Little Dream”, “I Dreamed a Dream”, “Safety Dance” and “Dream On” made it.

Does anyone see a recurring theme there?

I’m going to start with what has got to be one of my favourite Season 1 moments: Artie’s daydream of leading a flash mob to “Safety Dance”. It was an emotionally charged moment, as earlier in the episode, Artie had admitted that his biggest dream was – unsurprisingly – to walk again. It was also a fantastic artistic moment: Kevin McHale has already demonstrated his great acting and singing skills, and we got to see that he has the dancing skills to match.

Of course the performance was enhanced by the plotline, giving way to a great discussion opportunity. As I watched Artie struggle with the finality of his injury, I couldn’t help but reflect on what was the line between hope and futile wishing. Tina’s optimism must have been a refreshing change for Artie; but it could have led him down the dangerous path of chasing dreams. Emma’s pragmatism made for a necessary intervention meant to bring Artie back to a more moderate ground: that of an informed, realistic hope.

On a side note, I think the way Emma went about breaking the news to Artie was not very tactful or professional.

In any case, it comes back to yet another theme Glee has approached more than once: what defines a person. In the last episode, “Laryngitis”, Rachel realises that she isn’t her voice. This is something Artie has to struggle with, too – that, just like Sean, he isn’t defined by his mobility. What I like about this episode is that it delves a little further into the topic; that it’s easier said than done, and that even someone who seems to have accepted the reality of their condition can easily forget that they are not defined by said condition.

At the end of the episode, Artie tells Tina that he is okay with focusing on dreams he can make happen; of course, again, it’s easier said than done. One only has to listen for the sadness in his voice as he leads the Glee club (and beautifully) through “Dream a Little Dream of Me”, which I am really glad made it into the digital bundle.

And by the way, something tells me that this plotline just might be picked up once again.

Rachel’s mostly self-created drama becomes all too real when her pursuit of her mother’s identity is spurred on by Jesse’s intervention. H how I love Idina Menzel’s voice, and what better song – for both the plotline and her voice – than “I Dreamed a Dream”? Of course, the fact that it came from the musical Les Misérables, which both Bryan and Will were auditioning for, adds a little touch of je ne sais quoi. Thankfully, this song also made it into the digital bundle.

Another great performance that was included in the digital bundle is Will & Bryan’s audition rendition Aerosmith’s “Dream On”. I helps that I really love this song and that as you might have ascertained by the introductory line of this review, I also love Neil Patrick Harris. He and Matthew Morrison did an amazing job with this song, but also with Billy Joel’s “Piano Man” earlier in the episode (in the bar, when Bryan admits to Will that he has been miserable since he stopped performing, making this song quite à propos).

If Glee continues churning out these great performances and, more importantly, if they continue developing the various themes in their full complexity, they definitely have a loyal fan in me. Wouldn’t that make both Chelsea and Bukem proud.

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Songs From the Glee Episode “Home”

As a new Gleek (thank you to fellow BC writer Chelsea and to my littlest sister Bukem), I still find some things rather confusing. One of the main things that has been bugging me is the fact that the storyline in Glee is treated rather superficially. Hey, I watch Fringe guys – and that show is all about layering and complexity. Glee, well, Glee is definitely not Fringe, and not for obvious reasons.

But I digress.

It has come to my attention that what was wrong was my approach to the show. While it’s interesting to see where the story is going and that you do develop an attachment to each of the characters, it’s really for the songs that one tunes in.

And boy, do the songs keep boggling my mind.

From being at home inside your own body to questioning what turns a house into a home, this week’s episode could not be named anything else but “Home”. Kristin Chenoweth and Matthew Morrison’s rendition of “Fire” was of course awesome (how could it not?) but it’s their rendition of the “One Less Bell to Answer” and “A House if not a Home” medley that is noteworthy. Beautiful lyrics combined with Kristin Chenoweth’s voice made me want to cozy it up on the sofa between my parents (remember when you used to do that as a kid?). Not to state the obvious, but Kristin Chenoweth’s singing is incredible. I know, it’s like saying the sky is blue, but it seemed wrong to review the songs from this episode without a mention of her name.

Chris Colfer’s rendition of “A House is not a Home” was also beautiful, and further enhanced by his acting skills. I also loved the multiple layers involved in this song; at first, it was about his character’s crush on fellow Glee club member Finn, but soon also became about his own sense of isolation from his father. In another twist, it became about Finn’s grief over losing his father at a very young age: “Now and then I call your name/And suddenly your face appears”. If I were sitting on the above mentioned couch between my parents while watching, I would have given my own Dad a huge hug.

Being a huge Michael Jackson fan, my heart did a triple somersault when the first notes to The Wiz’ “Home” started playing. Adding Kristen Chenoweth’s voice to the mix… I think it’s obvious that this performance is going to rank pretty high in all of Glee’s season 1’s songs.

But despite that, “Home” is not my favourite performance of this episode. I already loved both Christina Aguilera and Amber Riley, and so her singing “Beautiful” inevitably and instantly became my favourite song from this episode. I already thought the song itself shares a powerful message, but it became even more powerful in the context of the story (Mercedes is told by Sue to lose ten pounds in a week and becomes, for the first time, incredibly uncomfortable in her own skin. How can the message of “You are beautiful no matter what they say /Words can’t bring you down” not hit a deeper chord than either the song itself or Mercedes’ story alone did?

You can download your favourite Glee songs from this episode and more on iTunes.

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Songs from the Glee Episode “Bad Reputation”

In Glee‘s episode “Bad Reputation”, the effects of backbiting and gossip were explored. As the episode shows, things are never quite as black and white as we wish them to be.

In short, “Bad Reputation” has Will investigating the origins of a list circulating around McKinley High casting an ugly shadow on the reputation of the glee club members.

Will: What’s a Glist?
Sue: It’s a Glee List, William. It’s a weekly ranking of your Glee Club based on a hotness quotient of sexual promiscuity. (…) Apparently you get a point for each act of perpetuated depravity.

It’s not clear at the beginning as to who posted that list, and I’m sure more than one person was certain it was our resident meanie. However, she soon had to start her own little PR campaign as a very personal video of her performing Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical” surfaces.

Finn: What’s so funny? (…)
Jesse: That’s Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical.” (…)
Finn: Wait, wait. That’s not Olivia Newton-John. That’s Sue Sylvester. (…)
Artie: Did she just do the Cabbage Patch?

The concept of a reputation is a funny thing. What is a good reputation? Is it one that is considered good by society, or one that suits the person’s needs, whatever they might be?

“Physical

Reputations also apply to fads, things and songs, as Will’s assignment for the week showed the club members. If we go back to Olivia Newton-John’s “Physical”, as Jesse puts it, “it was pretty groundbreaking subject matter at the time considering its depiction of fluid sexuality”. And yet all we can remember is the rather terrible video that came out.

As Will puts it in this episode, “becoming what you despise is not the answer”. This is why I found the use of Olivia Newton John’s song “Physical” interesting, as it objectified men just like the girls were complaining about men doing to them in “The Power of Madonna”. By the same token lyrics such as “I’m saying all the things that I know you’ll like/Making good conversation” don’t seem to mesh well with ? Doesn’t that go against everything “female empowerment” is about?

Thankfully, the song’s performance was impeccable and the video, although nowhere near as good as the one made for “Vogue”, was amusing.

“Ice Ice Baby

As an example of songs that were popular and yet got bad reputations, Will topped off the introduction of this week’s assignment with a great rendition of “Ice Ice Baby”. This version of the song is – dare I say it? – better than the original one (sorry, Van Winkle). As always, Will makes the assignment fun for his students and they join in on the rendition, complete with 1990-style mini-choreography. Of course I just had to look up Jim Carey’s In Living Colour parody of the same song as soon as “Bad Reputation” was over. It’s interesting that, just like a person can lose his influence in a matter of moments, a song about an important topic can become nothing more than a novelty act.

“U Can’t Touch This

As Artie puts it in the beginning of the episode, sometimes having a bad reputation can seem like a better alternative. In their bid to get their own bad reputation and consequently get some much wanted respect from their peers, Artie and a couple of glee members get inspired by Will’s assignment and head over to the library 1990-style: wearing MC Hammer’s pants made out of in bright, satin fabric and a boom box. They put on a raucous (and pretty awesome) performance for the librarian, hoping to be expelled. Instead, they end up being invited to perform at the librarian’s church during Sunday Service.

Some people just can’t seem to be bad, however hard they might try. Perhaps part of the reason why MC Hammer’s “U Can’t Touch This” became such a joke was this very fact: how can a man wearing Hammer pants and sporting nerdy sunglasses be seen as ‘bad’?

By the same token, is it such a bad thing to be bad at being bad?

“Run Joey Run

Just like being a bad boy can give a guy a certain cachet, being a bad girl seems to have become a hot commodity lately. Rachel is ashamed to have appeared at the bottom of the Glist (something I personally would be proud of), and decides to address the issue of her good reputation, which she considers a hindrance: “My shame is appearing so low in the Glist has made me reevaluate my image at this school and beyond. I’ve realized that in today’s culture of bad boy athletes and celebrity sex tapes, a good reputation is no good at all”.

The video she came up with was great on two levels. Puck might have thought that it sucked, but the singing was, as always, really good. As always, Lea Michele’s singing was great, as were Cory Monteith, Mark Salling and Jonathan Albert Groff.

The message in this performance was an important one, and in my opinion, the one most in line with the episode’s theme. The irony hits the viewer in the face. In the song, Julie is willing to die for Joey, stepping in front of the gun her father is aiming at him; and yet, Rachel portrays her as a girl who is playing three guys against the other.

Rachel: It was an artistic statement.
Finn: No it wasn’t. It was you trying to look like you had a bunch of guys fighting over you so you could stop looking like some kind of outcast and be seen as some hot, slutty girl singer. How can you do this to us? Is your stupid reputation more important than your relationships?

Rachel’s attempt at getting herself a better reputation in her opinion cost her more than she could have ever anticipated. With one stroke, she lost the respect of her fellow Glee club members. Now that she demonstrated that she was willing to hurt three guys who have played such important roles in her life – including an ex and her current boyfriend – how can anyone trust her again? By the same token, how can a guy wanting to date her trust her after this? She is going to have a hard time convincing Jesse or any other guy that she is trustworthy enough to get into a serious relationship after pulling such drama, the very nature of which undermines the basic trust at the heart of any relationship, be it romantic or other.

I wonder how Puck feels about Rachel throwing her good reputation away like this, seeing as he is trying so hard to rehabilitate his.

“Total Eclipse of the Heart

It takes a lot to build a good reputation, but a few seconds to destroy it. Rachel’s mistake cost her a lot, and so the episode finishing off on a rendition of Bonnie Tyler’s “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by her and the three guys she hurt was spot on. All the more that, when one plays with fire, one tends to end up hurt and alone – as alone Rachel is when all her fellow glee cast members walk out of their practice room on her. It seems that Rachel managed to create disunity within the Glee Club that will definitely give Vocal Adrenaline quite an edge at the upcoming Regional competition, unless of course they manage to overcome it.

First published here on Blogcritics.

Music Review: Glee: The Power of Madonna Cast Recording

The talented cast of Glee continue to churn out great remakes of beloved songs that make even the casual viewer want to purchase the soundtrack. This time, Madonna’s songs are the ones that will be subjected to Gleekification during the episode entitled “The Power of Madonna,” set to air April 20 on FOX.

Glee follows the ups and downs of McKinley High’s Glee Club as they set to conquer the world one singing competition at a time. According to the FOX press release about the episode “The Power of Madonna,” Mr. Schuester is concerned about the girls in the Glee Club being disrespected by its male members. Hoping that the girls adopt Madonna’s strength and the boys see the errors of their misogynistic ways, he challenges the team to choose Madonna songs for their next assignment.

As always, the remakes breathe new life into already vibrant songs. This is the third installment of Glee music. The Power of Madonna is a mini-album in the number of songs it contains, but definitely not in its quality.

A trip straight back into the 1980s — with a small sidestep into the 21st century — the mini-album features remakes of seven of Madonna’s songs. Most of them are classics, such as “Express Yourself” and “Vogue.” One is a mash-up of “Borderline” and “Open your Heart,” and one is a more recent single, “4 Minutes.”

The most interesting track here is “What It Feels Like For a Girl.” The lyrics Madonna sang in 2001 still (unfortunately) ring true today, but they acquire a new poignancy as they are sung by the boys in Glee Club. It’s a little jarring at first, but having guys sing “But for a boy to look like a girl is degrading/’Cause you think that being a girl is degrading” in an era of both backpedaling with regard to women’s emancipation and increasing homophobia give reason for a good, long pause. Hopefully tomorrow’s episode is going to emphasize this message.

But the best performance of the album is definitely “Like a Prayer.” The talented voices of the Glee cast, backed by a full choir, masterfully carry the lyrics to greater heights.

Madonna, who was treated to an advance viewing of the episode, said, “I think Mr. Schuester is very cute, and I’m glad he’s doing such a good job empowering all the girls.”

“This episode is our love letter to Madonna, an artist who has inspired me all my life. The hardest part was having to choose which songs to include from her incredible catalogue, as there were so many we wanted to do,” said Glee executive producer and co-creator Ryan Murphy. “We send her our thanks for her generosity with her music.”

The Glee: The Power of Madonna mini-album will be in stores the same day FOX airs the episode of the same name, Tuesday, April 20 (the episode airs at 9/8 central).

First published here on Blogcritics.