Today FM/RMG – 2005 – 101 minutes

Once again, the cream of musical talent have gathered together to re-record some well-known songs to benefit a good cause. This time, the songs of U2 get the 'Even Better Than the Real Thing' treatment, with proceeds going to the UNICEF Tsunami Relief Fund.

There's a moderate start to the album with Mark Geary's rendition of 'All I Want is You', which isn't nearly as memorable as Bellefire's cover of a few years back. Declan O'Rourke's version of 'When Love Comes to Town' picks up the pace a lot, and there are good offerings from Juliet Turner with 'Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For', Damien Dempsey with 'Sunday Bloody Sunday' and Tom Baxter with 'Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses'.

Most of the artists here sing the songs straight, without playing around much with the style. Apart from Elvis' (Gary Kelly) version of 'Vertigo' and the young choristers of St Fiachra's Choir with 'Sweetest Thing', the album is pretty unexciting in terms of musical experimentation. Even they don't push the boat out too far.

Fans of U2 definitely won't feel that this is 'Even Better Than the Real Thing' but it's hard to see how anything could be - and the cause is certainly a worthwhile one.

Katie Moten

Tracklisting CD1: Mark Geary: All I Want is You – The Frames: '40' – Declan O'Rourke: When Love Comes to Town – Mundy: Seconds – Paddy Casey: Mothers of the Disappeared – Bell X1: Heartlands – Erin McKeown: So Cruel – Jack L: Even Better Than the Real Thing – Mickey Harte: Running to Stand Still – Divine Comedy: October – Lisa Bresnan: Sunday Bloody Sunday – Tom Baxter: Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses

Tracklisting CD 2: Jerry Fish and the Mudbug Club: One – Aslan: New Year's Day – The Walls: With or Without You – Juliet Turner: Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For – The Devlins featuring Sharon Corr: Love is Blindness – Luka Bloom: Bad –Picturehouse: Who's Gonna Ride Your Wild Horses – Hazel Kaneswaren: A Sort of Homecoming – Roesy: Love Rescue Me – Elvis/Gary Kelly: Vertigo – Damien Dempsey: Sunday Bloody Sunday – George Murphy: van Diemen's Land – St Fiachra's Junior School Choir: Sweetest Thing