1980’s summer of mope continues with this mawkish, overheated Roy Orbison cover. Orbison’s great strength as a singer was his dignity: as a performer he knew when to hold firm in the face of grief, and more importantly, he knew when to crack. McLean shows no such awareness – he has no dignity to lose in the first place, and his performance here sounds slick and horribly insincere. Lacking the skill to bring any emotion to the song, he opts instead to slather on the strings to a quite grotesque degree: the last minute of this record, with McLean’s puny falsetto battling an avalanche of tacky tears, is painful.

Score: 2

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