Instant Karma: The Amnesty International Campaign to Save Darfur
To bring attention to the human rights abuses taking place in Darfur, Sudan and to raise money for the cause, Amnesty International presents this collection of John Lennon compositions performed by today’s (2007) recording artists. Lennon was a strong artistic presence who stamped his music with strong personal sentiments; taking on his idiosyncratic vision offers artists interesting choices. U2 streamline the choppy, anarchic rhythms of “Instant Karma.” R.E.M. stick to the ethereal vibe of “#9 Dream.” Christina Aguilera takes real chances with an aggressive take on Lennon’s extremely personal and self-pitying “Mother.” Jack Johnson’s acoustic finger-picked “Imagine” invigorates Lennon’s most well-known chestnut. The Flaming Lips trip out “(Just Like) Starting Over.” Best, Regina Spektor isolates the gorgeous melody lining “Real Love” to chilling effect. Aerosmith featuring Sierra Leone’s Refugee All Stars do what they can with the sloganeering of “Give Peace a Chance.” Los Lonely Boys turn “Whatever Gets You Through the Night” into one of their own. Jackson Browne sounds at home with the acoustic ballad “Oh My Love.” Overall, this is far more entertaining than most tribute / cover albums.