Apr 012019
 
best cover songs march
Amaara – House of Cards (Radiohead cover)

We just posted the 45 best Radiohead covers ever, but there’s already a 46th. Unsurprising, really, considering how much this band gets covered. The musical project of actor Kaelen Amara Ohm, Amaara took on the In Rainbows gem “House of Cards.” Her cover carries echoes of the haunting original, but with a smoother electro-ambient sheen.

Chris Anderson – Eh-Hee / Digging in the Dirt (Dave Matthews / Peter Gabriel cover)

Composer Chris Anderson draws from some pretty deep wells of music knowledge on his new Song Cycle. He covers Laurie Anderson and John Cage and Tom Waits – twice. He covers Peter Gabriel twice too, on a beautiful “Mercy Street” and more subtly here, working bits of “Digging in the Dirt” into – of all things – a gospel Dave Matthews cover. “The addition of a choir was important to me to create the feeling of a ground-swell of support,” he writes in an email. “The fact that the song is about ‘knocking the devil to his knees’ made the gospel choir a natural choice.” Continue reading »

Oct 012018
 
best cover songs september
Al Green – Before the Next Teardrop Falls (Freddy Fender cover)


Sorry, Beyoncé; the biggest surprise release of the year might be Al Green’s sudden return after a decade away. Well, not totally away; he still conducts weekly services at his Memphis church and, when I attended, was liberally sprinkling quotes from “Love and Happiness” and “Take Me to the River” into his sermons. Best of all: This Freddy Fender cover sounds like Al hasn’t lost a step. It’s apparently a one-off, but hopefully recording it will whet his appetite to do more. Continue reading »

May 212018
 

In Memoriam pays tribute to those who have left this world, and the songs they left us to remember them by.

frightened rabbit covers

As a musician that avidly records cover songs, I often think about what draws me to putting my stamp on a particular song.

In the thirty years I’ve been playing covers, I find myself drawn to music that could be described as “emotional” without always fitting neatly into a genre box. I connect with a song’s content craft enough to try to reinvent it from the inside out. I am always drawn to songs of love lost, forlorn, or unrequited. The “breakup” song itself is something I immediately can empathize with, which is why a lot of my covers fall under the category of “ballad,” for better or worse.

Now one of my favorite writers of such songs has left us, and it’s really hit me hard. Having first seen Frightened Rabbit live in an intimate setting in Chicago after the release of The Midnight Organ Fight about a decade ago, lead singer Scott Hutchison was one of those frontmen that I immediately identified with. Continue reading »

Jun 122013
 

Frightened Rabbit has this uncanny ability to turn even the most upbeat and poppy of songs into something deep and morose. For example, when the Scottish band stopped by the triple j studio for “Like A Version,” they took Best Coast‘s love ode to California, “The Only Place,” and somehow managed to make it seem like California is mostly cloudy and dark. Continue reading »

May 012013
 

Frightened Rabbit is no stranger to the AV Club’s Undercover series. Back in 2010, the Scottish band covered the Lemonheads “Confetti” in a very Scottish manner. This year, they ALMOST covered Blackstreet’s “No Diggity,” but backed out and opted for Cheap Trick‘s classic “Surrender.” Continue reading »

Jan 112012
 

Scottish folk-rock band Frightened Rabbit have appeared on Cover Me multiple times, covering everyone from Springsteen to Death Cab, but rarely do we get to post about someone covering a Frightened Rabbit song. Denver-based singer-songwriter John Statz’ fifth studio release, Old Fashioned, is due out on January 24th. On Monday, folk covers website Cover Lay Down premiered the only non-original song on the album, FR’s “Old Old Fashioned.” Continue reading »