faith yang (yang nai wen) covers 11 indie/rock classics in this album entitled "self-selected"; classics that are made definitive by the original singers/bands. what a daunting task for faith to emulate the success of the originals. no singer with small guts dares to take this challenge. kudos to faith for her courage.
first track is radiohead's "fake plastic tree" (taken from "the bends"). while one can't compare faith's vocals with thom yorke's and i would give faith the benefit of no-comparison here, i find the backing band sorely lacking. the electric guitar doesn't scale the heights of radiohead's version. the climax is not exciting either. the whole song sounds just flat and one-dimensional.
the same can be said of the verve's "the drugs don't work". the band just does not support the greatness of the song. when i compare faith's version with verve's original, faith's is so ordinary, without the psychedelic feel and dimensionality of the original.
it doesn't mean this album is completely dispensable. faith has her moments but most times she is let down by the band, which is really ordinary. i dont mean to put down on taiwanese musicians (mostly sessionists) but they don't have the coherence, artistic freedom and brilliance of western bands.
i would rate this 6.5/10, a qualified recommendation.