The idea of one artist reproducing the work of another isn’t new, but put all thoughts of Ryan Adam’s reworking of T Swift’s 1989 to one side, because Mercury Rev’s loving tribute to Bobbie Gentry’s flop 1968 masterwork is something else. Featuring different female guest vocalists on each track, the overall effect is more shimmering than the original; even ‘Ode To Billie Joe’, the only hit from the record, in the hands of MRev and Lucinda Williams sounds more glossy, but desperate, than Gentry’s more passive version. Swapping out the guitar for keys on ‘Courtyard’ with Beth Orton is gorgeous, Lætitia Sadier’s almost Carpenters-esque take on ‘Mornin’ Glory’ is exquisite and ‘Reunion’ with Rachel Goswell is glorious rather than the foot- stomping Gentry version. Brilliant.
Buy: Mercury Rev – Bobbie Gentry’s The Delta Sweete Revisited