Various Artists, Happy Together: A Lujo Records Wedding Compilation
Here’s the story: the guy (Erik Aucoin) who started the fledgling Lujo Records hired a girl whom he hadn’t met (Jocelyn Toews) on the other coast to help do PR. Eventually, the girl found greener pastures and went to work for a bigger, better known indie label where, flush with some success, she decided to purchase half of Lujo Records. Inevitably, our hero and heroine met. Now, here’s where things get interesting — they fell in love and recently got married! How great is that? So what we get here isn’t merely a compilation; this was the wedding gift given to the guests at Erik’s and Jocelyn’s wedding, to boot.
There’s all sorts of flavors in this bag — lo-fi to hi-fi, experimental, pop, emo dross, amateurs and charlatans, all doing covers as various as their composers (Johnny Cash, the Zombies, Aaliyah, and Phil Collins, for a few). Track 4, “This Will Be Our Year” by the Out-Circuit sounds great; very Beautiful South/ Housemartins-esque, doing justice to the original, and done with professionalism and class and some studio time, indeed. I tell you, the last thing I’d want commemorating the love of me & mine is some mopey mumbler with shoddy production. But hey, all the colors of the rainbow are here, the dull & the bright alike.
I don’t know all these artists — I don’t think any of us would — but that matters little because there’re some great songs here, some great performances, some great interpretations, and it’s good, plain fun. The story behind this project alone is enough to enjoy it. Love’s a great thing, ain’t it?