covers

You are currently browsing the archive for the covers category.

It’s been a while since we’ve talked about them, so in case you’ve forgotten let me remind you just how awesome Those Darlins are. I was fortunate enough to see them in person Monday night, and they absolutely rocked the house down. They look sweet and demure, but once they crank up their guitars and get their punkabilly music flowing, these chicks are badass. They may get their attitude from 70s punk bands, but they know that their roots lie in country music. One of the cuts on their eponymous debut album is a cover of The Carter Family’s “Cannonball Blues”, an homage to the first family of country music. Here they are performing it live:

And, just in case you’re not familiar with it, here’s the original:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Josh Ritter
Regular readers know well my appreciation of Josh Ritter. He’s a great songwriter, but sometimes his covers can be even better. This segment has already featured him covering Tom Petty, Bruce Springsteen, and Gene Austin. This week he takes on Modest Mouse with a relatively faithful cover of “Blame it on the Tetons”. Faithful it may be, but Ritter is a better singer than Isaac Brock, so there’s an instant upgrade. Check it out, along with the original:

Josh Ritter

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Modest Mouse

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

via Cover Lay Down

Most of the time I try to pick obscure, odd, or off-the-wall covers for this feature, but tonight I’m feeling like a classic. It’s a cover that matches the tone of the song so much better than the original that the original artist now plays it the imitator’s way. Ladies and gentlemen, Jimi Hendrix:

Who doesn’t love a good 80s rock song? I know I do. But it’s gotta come with the big hair the ripped acid washed jeans. The New Pornographers deliver the goods with this cover of Toronto’s “Your Daddy Don’t Know”, from the soundtrack for Fubar. Neko’s crimped hair is AWESOME in a kitschy sort of way. Check it out:

I saw It Might Get Loud this weekend. It’s a documentary about Jimmy Page, The Edge, and Jack White. It covers their relationship with the guitar; how they discovered it, what inspires them, and how they channel their creativity into it. In it Jack White talks at length about his fascination with old Delta blues, with how the masters of the genre were able to reveal raw emotion through the simplest of forms. That fascination has profoundly influenced the sound of The White Stripes. He and Meg strip songs down to their basics and play music that is imperfect and raw, but incredibly powerful.

Here are Jack and Meg paying homage to legendary bluesman Son House with a cover of “Death Letter Blues”:

And just in case you’re not familiar with the original, here’s Son himself:

Merry Christmas everyone.

Longtime readers know how I feel about Radiohead. If you’re not up to speed, the short version is that I think they suck, and everybody knows they suck, but people think it’s cool to like them, so they pretend to. A basic Emperor’s New Clothes story.

So it’s not a surprise that I think someone’s cover of a Radiohead song is better than the original. What IS surprising is whose cover I think is better. He’s not exactly an established figure in the music industry. He’s not a teenager performing for the world of YouTube. He’s not someone you would even notice if you passed him on the street. He’s a homeless guy who went on the Opie & Anthony radio show to promote their Homeless Shopping Spree. During the course of the interview he let them know he played guitar and sang. So they tracked down a guitar for him and he played a couple of songs for them. One of them was this version of Radiohead’s “Creep”, and it’s amazing. Maybe it’s the different perspective the lyrics take when he sings them. Maybe it’s the raw emotion in his voice. Whatever it is, Thom Yorke should figure it out. Because, as the kids say, he got served.

via Deep Thoughts

I had “Bohemian Rhapsody” stuck in my head for a big chunk of today, so to “celebrate” (or bring you all down with me), here’s an utterly absurd version by The Muppets. It’s either really, really dumb or completely inspired.

I’m in a pretty sedate mood tonight. It’s understandable really. The weather in Baltimore is cold and rainy. I’m still recovering from Thanksgiving gluttony. And I haven’t gotten much sleep in the last few days. So we’re going to go with a low-key cover tonight.

Gillian Welch is a modern folk/country/bluegrass genius. She’s an incredibly gifted singer, and an even better songwriter. Portland’s Blind Pilot give her song “Look at Miss Ohio” a respectful and intimate treatment:

In case you’re not familiar with the original, here it is, from Welch’s album Soul Journey:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

via My Old Kentucky Blog

A capella covers can be dicey. Sometimes they add new dimensions to songs. Sometimes they just flat out suck. This is the former. I know nothing about Levek, but this cover of Grizzly Bear’s “Shift” certainly has me intrigued. The video apparently comes from some obscure Disney movie, but it fits the song perfectly.

If you aren’t familiar with the original, here’s Grizzly Bear performing it acoustically:

Kudos to I Guess I’m Floating for uncovering this gem.

« Older entries § Newer entries »