Thursday, April 06, 2006

My [Current] Top Covers

I wanted to post the best ten covers of all time. But then, I realised I'm a person... not a god - I couldn't possibly be so arrogant to believe that I knew everything about everything. It's alrite if I think I know everything, and for the purpose of this post I do know everything because I know all about what I like. And I like these covers. No particular order; at this caliber it's hard to choose without changing your mind constantly.

Benjamin Costello - Such Great Heights
Original - The Postal Service
I just listened to this, and liked it so much I had to put it on again. The whole piece of music fits in well with the more chillout acoustic feel. The only pity it is that this is awfully similar to Iron and Wine's cover of the same song. The reason why this made it rather than Iron and Wine's version is because i prefer how the vocals are laid down on this version; I think Costello has a more down-to-earth vocal feel. I also prefer the production on this version... it all just seems to work better.

Jack L - Hallelujah
Original - Leonard Cohen
I know what you're saying, "you mispelt Jeff Buckley". No, I really didn't. Although I do really love Jeff Buckley's version, I felt it was a bit cliché so I thought I'd throw in a surprise. I have to say hearing this version of the ballad is so invigorating. Jack L's voice is astonishing, and this song really shows it off to the fullest degree. The build up's ["The fourth, the fifth the minor fall, the major lift"] are powerful and when it breaks down and becomes softer it's really beautiful*. Unfortunately, I couldn't find a version of it but here's a sample from his website of a different cover, this time of Kylie Minogue's "Can't get you out of my head". Yes, right here.

*Sorry, I don't mean to sound like a sap, I just couldn't think of how else to describe it.
Original - Modest Mouse
Sun Kil Moon is Mark Kozelek who is also known for being part of Red House Painters. His latest release as Sun Kil Moon, is Tiny Cities, which is his take on a number of Modest Mouse songs. This one is Ocean Breathes Salty, which was one of the singles from Good news for people who love bad news*. I love Kozelek's voice over the picked guitar, and it's so big for so little instrumentation being involved. The whole thing has a real big, floaty feel like you could be walking on clouds or flying or something.

*Side - Really recommended album.

Radiohead - Nobody Does It Better
Original - Carly Simon
Carly Simon's Bond* tune gets a trashy guitar remake courtesy of Radiohead. Some quality work here, with Jonny Greenwood's guitar definitely standing as possibly the most significant part of this song. Yorkes vocals give it a raw edge, that contrasts the original's more polished vocals to say the least. I don't think I need to say much, as it pretty much speaks for itself.
*Side - Timothy Dalton was probably my favourite Bond, but Roger Moore comes a close second.
Original - Gloria Gaynor
I don't know how this wasn't really big, because its really great. The original was good but this funky version contrasts it so much it surpasses it... if that's possible? This song get's you hooked right away when the vocals come in with "At first I was afraid..." the singer's (John McCrea) red-neckish vocals REALLY work over the tinny guitar I think. The first 20 seconds of the song are quite empty before he fills it out with his voice... but enough has been said. Nearly. It's a REALLY good cover.


Benjamin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Benjamin said...

Thanks for the acknowledgment :) It's funny - I always thought of my recording as a cover of the Iron and Wine version (I'm notorious for the cover of a cover ;) )

Thanks again and keep up the great blogging.