Songs from the Underground, a compilation of artists from “the world’s most diverse music venue,” plays, unfortunately, much like a typical trip on the subway. Maybe there’s a vibraphonist (Sean McCaul’s “Strazz”) playing something vaguely soothing, though it’s hard to hear over the grating brakes – but it’s okay because it’s not that great anyway. And there’ll probably be something at the next stop, maybe a four-woman Finlandian musical collective (Kaiku: “Puhurin Poika”) singing something sort of sweet and haunting, but pretty monotonous – and doesn’t Bjork do that, like, a hundred times better?
With a few exceptions – Theo Eastwind’s “High” (a Jeff Buckley imitator, but aren’t they all?), and the raw, country beauty of Jason Green’s aptly titled “Little Blue Cart Blues” – most of Underground is derivative and forgettable, reminding you that something much larger and more important is going on upstairs.
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