Various Artists, "Glee: The Music--Season One, Volume 2"

82 Billboard Rating

Any TV program that can return the song "Don't Rain on My Parade" to the mainstream deserves recognition. For the second soundtrack installment of Fox's hit musical comedy "Glee," the talented cast covers more classics, with its own unique vocal arrangements. Actor Mathew Morrison's mash-up of the Police's "Don't Stand So Close to Me" with Gary Puckett & the Union Gap's "Young Girl" proves just that. But while "Glee" is most notably an ensemble cast, one actor to watch is Amber Riley, who plays the divalicious character Mercedes Jones. Riley delivers the album's most breathtakingly soulful performance with "And I Am Telling You I'm Not Going." In addition to covering the classics, the cast members revisit modern hits like Kelly Clarkson's "My Life Would Suck Without You"-and they do so with the same magical touch.-Crystal Bell