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Archive for December, 2008

– – – THE PARTY’S OVER – – –

Friday, December 12th, 2008

Looks like this may be the end.
Been a long time coming but the DMCA finally caught up with us and has started deleting posts. Now that I’m on their radar, it’s only a matter of time before this starts spreading like cancer to the rest of my entries.
I may return, who knows, but I’m going to need a decent chunk of time to think it over. For now I can’t sit back and watch as they dismantle,
post by post, the site I’ve worked so hard on building up. To those who followed regularly and posted comments, I can’t begin to thank you enough and for the rest, I hope you enjoyed the music anyway.


Leopold Stotch

Presidential Parton

Friday, December 12th, 2008

Dressed head to toe in black, creepers, cloves and all, in high school being somewhat mortified to find out that Strawberry Switchblade‘s Jolene was actually a Dolly Parton cover. Never mind of course that all the eyeliner in world couldn’t disguise the fact that, musically speaking, SS’s synth pop barely passed for goth. Bah, youth!
Did I mention we also got a couple of versions from The White Stripes today as well?

Strawberry Switchblade – Jolene
Strawberry Switchblade – Jolene (Extended Mix)
The White Stripes – Jolene
The White Stripes – Jolene (2003-20-04 – Live in Boston)


While My Fish Gently Sleeps

Friday, December 12th, 2008

If you think you’re staring at a cover for the new Residents album, you may be a bit disappointed.
When I was around 4 my parents owned a charming pet piranha inexplicably named Prudence. As I would wander around the outside of the aquarium, Prudence would follow alongside, eyes fixed on me the same way Sylvester the Cat’s would when he saw Tweety; imagining him as a succulent roasted hen with all the fixings still swinging on his perch. And despite being underwater, so help me I could see the fish salivating. Whenever I would get too close to the tank, to which I came
just about chin high, he would go ballistic. BAM! BAM! BAM!, he would furiously start smacking his nose(?) into the glass in a vain attempt get to a bite of the would be appetizer wrapped in Casper pajamas. Ironically however, when my parents ever came close to his watery domain, he would hightail it, cowering behind his little coral castle. Odd, my parents thought, why our son and not us? It took my dad, quick as Columbo, two minutes to figure it out. Getting on their knees,to about my height, they re-approached tank. Sure enough Prudence rushed right back out and proceeded to bang his head against the glassy border, seeing an opportunity not just for a 4 year old h’ordeuvre but a two course meal.
Prudence’s tenure in our house was unfortunately cut short and reluctantly had to be given back to the pet shop from whence he came. We were moving to Florida, where they had laws against any kind of aquatic carnivorous pet that you couldn’t make fall asleep by
flipping over and rubbing it’s belly. Needless to say I was bummed beyond belief that my watery little pal, who in my mind was smacking his face against the glass in is eagerness to greet me, was gone. It was only a few months later when my mom and I were at the grocery store when I spotted my recently missing friend. There, in the fish section, lounging on a bed of ice between his buddies Mr. Salmon and Mr. Halibut was what I thought was Prudence (actually a recently expired Flounder). ‘HEY MOM HEY MOM! LOOK IT”S PRUDENCE, HE’S SLEEPING!!!! HEY PRUDENCE WAKE UP!!’.
So as you can imagine it’s pretty much impossible for me, when hearing
The Beatles
Dear Prudence, not to recall my toothy,
sub-aquatic, long lost childhood friend, rather than Mia Farrow’s sister, to whom the song is actually dedicated to.
While I will always have a soft spot for Siouxsie & The Banshees‘ cover and it’s arguably the best version of Prudence, I’d have to say Songs of The Green Pheasant are quick on her spiked heels with their delightful, rather spaced out, rendition. If you’re looking for something to replace that tired Mario Bros. background music, 8 Bit rockers The Hunt For Yoshi do a great chiptune cover. DJ Kazimir manages to squeak out a not half-bad drum & bass version featuring Carol C of Si*Sé fame on vocals. We also have some good jazzy funk cuts from Ramsey Lewis, The Five Stairsteps, Gabor Szabo, Atlantic Bridge, Brad Mehldau and Hysear Don Walker (which sounds like a dead ringer for Air). Lastly we have a few straight ahead, somewhat psychedelic versions from Fury In The Slaughterhouse, Feet Of Clay, Radio Stars, Sound Foundation and John A. Roberts.

Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live – Nocturne)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live in Lausanne 91′)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live Paris 91′)
Siouxsie & Banshees – Dear Prudence (Live in Europe 95)

Songs Of Green Pheasant – Dear Prudence

The Hunt For Yoshi – Dear Prudence

DJ Kazimir (with Carol C) – Dear Prudence

Ramsey Lewis – Dear Prudence
The Five Stairsteps – Dear Prudence
Gabor Szabo – Dear Prudence
Atlantic Bridge – Dear Prudence
Brad Mehldau – Dear Prudence
Hysear Don Walker – Dear Prudence

Fury In The Slaughterhouse – Dear Prudence
Feet Of Clay – Dear Prudence
Radio Stars – Dear Prudence
Sound Foundation – Dear Prudence
John A. Roberts – Dear Prudence


The C.R.E.A.M. Of The Crop

Wednesday, December 10th, 2008

10 man strong jazz/funk outfit El Michels Affair channel their inner
Wu-Tang Clan
with an instrumental rendition of C.R.E.A.M.
Dolla dolla bill y’all!

El Michels Affair – C.R.E.A.M.


Catching Some Z’s

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

Murray Hewitt: You can’t just neglect your old fans like that. What happens when your new fans fly the coop? You’ll end up like Zed-Zed Top.
Bret: What are you talking about?
Murray Hewitt: You know, Zed-Zed Top?
Bret: Yeah.
Murray Hewitt: They sang the song about the woman with the legs. Anyway, they grew big beards, their old fans didn’t like it, their new fans didn’t like them without the beards, and then they had a “Do we have a beard or not?” situation.

Ah Murray. Can’t get enough of that guy.
If you haven’t figured it out by now today’s cover is ZZ Top, more specifically
Sharp Dressed Man
. We got two well kitted out versions; a great synth-pop/electroclash cut from Dragonette and a down home bluegrass slide guitar rendition from the appropriately nomenclatured Beardhead.

Dragonette – Sharp Dressed Man
Beardhead – Sharp Dressed Man


Getting Into Trouble

Friday, December 5th, 2008

Jamaican favorites Prince Buster, taking some time off from washing pum pum, as well as the ever soulful Jimmy London tackle Simon & Garfunkel‘s warmhearted classic Bridge Over Troubled Water.

Prince Buster – Bridge Over Troubled Water
Jimmy London – Bridge Over Troubled Water


Monkey Business

Thursday, December 4th, 2008

Overnight NME garage rock furors The Arctic Monkeys get the cover treatment today with four cuts of their big hit I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor.
Good contender for the throne of Sharon Jones and best in this lot by a long shot is Baby Charles with her neo-Stax sound version. Also following in that northern soul vein is a live cut from Karen Taylor (btw any info on her would be great. Google turns up way to many Karen Taylors). Tummy Touch odball duo Patrick & Eugene go for a curious minimal jazz treatment, be sure to check out their even weirder video. And lastly, and don’t hate, but the Sugababes manage to turn out a great garage rock-lite version too.

Baby Charles – I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor
Karen Taylor – I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor (live)
Patrick & Eugene – I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor
Sugababes – I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor


Making a Killing

Wednesday, December 3rd, 2008

Is it me or was anyone else out there quite perplexed why Ian McCulloch, at the height of his career in Echo & The Bunnymen, was being compared to Jim Morrison? On one side you had a loud, drug fueled, shirtless American wild child and on the other a waifish new waver with perfectly primmed hair, hiding behind his mic and oversized trench
coat nursing a pint. While The Bunnymen were draped in 60s nostalgia and no disrespect to either them or Morrison, I love em both, but leather trousers is where similarity begins and ends.
Thankfully McCulloch had his own voice (which didn’t sound like the expired
peyote vacuum) and nowhere did it get a better workout then on their
sublime ballad, The Killing Moon.
As you can imagine covers abound of this one, including many a bedroom belladonna belting it out on YouTube, evidenced here, here and here. And as usual goth versions got left on the Versions cutting room floor making way for some other great covers. Playing favorites, I’ll start with The Quakes rockabilly version, which sounds discordant on paper but trust me, it works.
I’ve also included perennial VG faves Nouvelle Vague with both studio and a plethora of live cuts. Pavement, Grant Lee Phillips and Something for Kate all turn out some fairly faithful versions. Pre-Mazzy Star group Opal, featuring their new fresh faced replacement singer Hope Sandoval, do a rather dark, neo psychedlic/space rock live rendition. Fans of Tori Amos, Kate Bush et al will enjoy Wendy Rule‘s rather plush version. And lastly for our Brazilian friends I’ve tacked on Os Replicantes portugese cover A Lua que Mata.

The Quakes – The Killing Moon

Nouvelle Vague – The Killing Moon
Nouvelle Vague – The Killing Moon (Live – Aula Magna 07.12.07)
Nouvelle Vague – The Killing Moon (Live – 12.02.06 Montpellier)
Nouvelle Vague – The Killing Moon (Live – Manchester 21.05.07)
Nouvelle Vague – The Killing Moon (Live – 14.6.06 – Le Bataclan, Paris)
Pavement – The Killing Moon (BBC Session)
Grant Lee Phillips – The Killing Moon
Something for Kate – The Killing Moon
Opal – The Killing Moon (Live Vienna 03.30.88)
Wendy Rule – The Killing Moon
Os Replicantes – A Lua que Mata (The Killing Moon)


Get Up, Get On Up

Tuesday, December 2nd, 2008

As you can tell by reading this blog I’m a bit of an old school reggae fanatic. Where the fanaticism quickly descends into snobbery however is when Bob Marley is brought up. Legions of college freshmen, armed with 4 foot bongs, ultimate Frisbees and copies of Legend have kind of soured me on Bob. But I’ve got to confess, if I didn’t discover him in 8th grade there would be no Augustus Pablo, Keith Hudson, Alton Ellis, Joe Gibbs etc etc later on down the road and subsequently this would probably be just an 80’s or electronica covers blog. While most Marley covers run trite, and some truly arson-worthy (i.e. Eric Clapton), Munich-based (by way of St Lucia) group Malcolm’s Locks turns Marley’s classic protest anthem Get Up Stand Up into a nice slice of James Brown-worthy, rare groove funk.

Malcolm’s Locks – Get Up Stand Up


Some Alone Time

Monday, December 1st, 2008

Don’t know about you but when I hear Alone Again Or by Love I think of the love scene in the Wes Anderson’s Bottle Rocket. Well that, and hearing it for the first time on a Damned record in high school, where when I saw the title I thought the ‘Or’ part was the biggest typo blunder ever. Doh!
For the most part today’s covers don’t stray far from the original. Like I mentioned above The Damned version was my first, and still favorite introduction to this song.
Belle & Sebastian are here again with their live version as are Calexico, whose Tex-Mex sound overall seems steeped in Alone’s blueprint, as well as lending a hand
again to Neko Case‘s live version.
Tennessee indie act Mouserocket wrap theirs in their own “cello-pop” sound.
Proto metal act UFO goes soft, The Boo Radleys and the Oblivians go loud while the instrumental surf band The Shout exercise their vocal chords.
And lastly the aptly named (and mysteriously absent from the web) Da Capo with their beautifully lazy twang and snare rendition.

The Damned – Alone Again Or
Belle & Sebastian – Alone Again Or (live)
Calexico – Alone Again Or
Neko Case (with Calexico) – Alone Again Or (live)
Mouserocket – Alone Again Or
UFO – Alone Again Or
The Boo Radleys – Alone Again Or
Oblivians – Alone Again Or
The Shout – Alone Again Or
Da Capo – Alone Again Or