Various In The Name of Love: Africa Celebrates U2

Got to love the concept: prominent African musicians cover classic U2 songs in tribute to Bono and company’s humanitarian relief work around Africa. The ’80s and ’90s U2 tunes prove a solid foundation for departures like Angelique Kidjo’s lush, tri-lingual Afro-pop take on "Mysterious Ways” and Vieux Farka Toure’s slow-cooked Malian blues guitar on "Bullet The Blue Sky.” Other repeat listens: Keziah Jones reinvigorates "One” with a percussive yet acoustic groove; Tony Allen’s falsetto vocals, Afrobeat shuffle and horn section transform "Where the Streets Have No Name”; Sierra Leone’s Refugee All-Stars funk out on the highlife reggae tip during "Seconds” (with a random cameo by Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry); and Les Nubians spin "With or Without You” into dancehall, dub and French down-tempo. As for original arrangements, it’s a draw between Ba Cissoko’s "Sunday Bloody Sunday,” featuring brooding Saharan pickin’, impassioned chanting and pulsing djembe, and Soweto Gospel Choir’s swelling, ecstatic a cappella rendition of "Pride (In the Name of Love).” Uplifting. (Shout! Factory)