When two receptionists, Shannon Lowney and Lee Ann Nichols, were killed in an attack on a women's health clinic in Brookline, MA, in 1994, it drew the attention of several Boston area musicians, most notably Letters to Cleo lead singer Kay Hanley. Hanley decided to turn two upcoming Letters to Cleo shows in Boston into benefit shows and attempted to get some top-level local bands to play the shows as well. The response was so overwhelming that the event turned into a five-night, nine-show extravaganza with 37 different artists taking the stage. Under the name Safe and Sound, the shows' proceeds went to organizations that supported health care and educational programs for women and children. This CD collects tracks from 16 of the artists who participated in the concerts, and it serves as a nice sampler of Boston's most popular pop/rock acts circa 1995. Most of the tracks are otherwise unreleased, which makes the CD desirable to hardcore fans of the featured artists. Contributions by Letters to Cleo, Juliana Hatfield, and Aimee Mann are as strong as anything on their albums, and the Mighty Mighty Bosstones' "The Impression That I Get" appears here more than a year prior to becoming a modern rock hit. All in all, Safe and Sound is a nice artifact of the state of modern rock before hard rock and rap-metal started to dominate the format in the late '90s.
AllMusic Review by Scott Sepich