Dec 162011
 

When people look back in 2011 in music a decade from now, one name will come to mind: Adele. In our little world of cover songs, she dominated. Everyone covered Adele this year. It’s not just that we saw more covers of “Rolling in the Deep” than any other song; they beat out second place (probably “Pumped Up Kicks”) by like a factor of five! We generally try to look for larger cover trends in these annual wrap-ups, but it’s hard to remember anything else from this year except the year-long onslaught of Adele covers hitting our mailbox.

There’s only one “Rolling in the Deep” cover in this year’s list though. The rest are all over the place. Some of the artists listed built their covers with lush soundscapes, thick beats, and intricate string work. Others just took guitars or pianos and bowled us over with the emotion in their voices. There may not be much of an overarching “Year in Covers” narrative, but that means there’s a cover or two for everyone. From feel-good takes on rap songs to kill-yourself versions of pop songs, this year’s list features flips, flops, and genre switcheroos of all sorts. A good cover should be informed by the source material but stand on its own, and we’ll be unrolling the 50 finest examples of songs doing just that all week. Start with #50-41 on the next page and check back daily as we count down to the best cover of 2011.

Dec 162011
 

Ryan Adams is a prolific musician. With his solo efforts, The Cardinals, and the now defunct Whiskey Town, Adams has proven himself to be indelible on the music world. Going beyond studio albums, tours, and collaborative endeavors, Adams also reveals his diverse talents through cover songs, many of which you can listen to here. The most recent song he covered was “Blue Thunder” by the masters of all things spacey and cerebral, Galaxie 500, which he debuted at the Orpheum Theater in Boston. Continue reading »

Dec 152011
 

Christmas covers hit the blogosphere by the dozen this time of year, but even though we can’t post on ’em all, we’ve been trying to keep track of our favorites. Here, in the third installment of our holiday sorta-series, are a bunch of great new Christmas covers, jumbled together like last year’s tree lights. Continue reading »

Dec 152011
 

Back in the late ’90s, Swedish pop stars the Cardigans were all over the radio. All you heard all day was lead singer Nina Persson singing “love me, love me” everywhere you went. But can you blame the DJs (and VJs, because, yes, there was a time when MTV played music videos)? The song came from Romeo + Juliet starring Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio! To all you young’uns, just imagine Twilight, but if it had guns and didn’t suck. Continue reading »

Dec 152011
 

Beachy buzz trio Tennis have a knack for picking just the right songs to cover. Back in June we heard them do Brenda Lee’s “Is It True” and they’ve just dropped another, a cover of “Tears in the Typing Pool.” Where Broadcast’s original was lo-fi and choppy, Tennis bring a lush sheen to this beautiful wash. Continue reading »

Dec 152011
 

Breakout buzz band Wu Lyf began their career surrounded by layers of mystery and identity-concealment, so, even though they’re out in the open now, it figures that their latest cover digs into the super-obscure. It’s a song by Papa M aka. David Pajo aka. the guitarist from Slint called “Krusty.” Even if you don’t know it – and you almost certainly don’t – Wu Lyf’s cover is worth a listen. Continue reading »