Various Artists - The Art Of McCartney

By Frank Gates

Released Monday November 17th, 2014 - Arctic Poppy

There would be few who could deny that Paul McCartney is one of the great songwriters of our generation. From his time with The Beatles, through to his work with Wings and as a solo artist, when one looks back at the 20th Century McCartney is undoubtedly high on the list. And with 'The Art Of McCartney', some of the all time legends have paid tribute to the mans talent.

36 tracks feature on the 2-disc collection, some of it is fantastic, some of it a little bizarre, but there is certainly a little something for everyone.

Billy Joel opens the album with his rendition of 'Maybe I'm Amazed', and also starts proceedings on disc 2 with solid 'Live And Let Die'. Joel has been a known Beatles/McCartney fan for many years and totally delivers with his rocking performance.

Bob Dylan is there (Things We Said Today), Kiss (Venus And Mars/Rock Show), Roger Daltrey (Helter Skelter), The Cure (Hello Goodbye) and Alice Cooper (Eleanor Rigby). A few newer outfits feature also withOwl City taking on 'Listen To What The Man Said' and Corinne Bailey Rae tackling 'Bluebird'.

Producer Ralph Sall, who originally came up with the album concept in 2003, brought McCartney's backing band into the studio for the sessions and laid the foundation down for most of the album.  It must be said that everyone on the album does justice to their song in question. The highlights for me are Perry Farrell's take on 'Got To Get You Into My Life', Willie Nelson's 'Yesterday' and The Airborne Toxic's 'No More Lonely Night' (although I do miss David Gilmour's guitar solo).

Tribute albums tend to be hit or miss and I'd class this as hit. Some of the songs may be a little predictably arranged, however if it ain't broke why fix? If you're a fan of McCartney, or even one of the performers involved, it's definitely one to check out.