Follow all our Best of 2017 coverage (along with previous year-end lists) here.
Year-end lists are a time to look back. That’s something we’ve been doing a lot of this year.
See, we turned ten years old in 2017 – practically ancient in internet-blog terms – so we’ve indulged in what we feel is well-earned nostalgia. At the beginning of the year, each of our writers picked the ten most important covers in their life (see them here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here and here). We even listed the ten most important covers in Cover Me‘s life, from the song that inspired the site to our very first Best of the Year winner.
Then, to cap things off, in October we commissioned a 25-track tribute to the cover song itself – which you can still download for free. We love the covers everyone contributed so much, incidentally, that we didn’t consider them for this list. It’d be like picking favorite children – if you had 25 of ’em.
Oh, and have I mentioned I wrote a book? … What’s that you say? I mentioned that constantly? Well, I’m quite proud of it. It’s called Cover Me: The Stories Behind the Greatest Cover Songs of All Time and it makes a great Christmas gift and – ok, ok, I’ll stop. You can find plenty more about it elsewhere.
Suffice to say, there’s been a lot of looking back this year. And we hope you’ll indulge us this one last glance rearward before we leap into 2018. Because if it’s been a hell of a year for us, it’s certainly also been a hell of a year for the cover song in general. Some of this year’s list ranks among the best covers we’ve ever heard, period. So dig in, and thanks for your support this past decade.
After two albums of balls-to-the-wall rock, Japandroids got a little artier on their recent third album Near to the Wild Heart of Life. Artier by their standards, that is – there’s the occasional synthesizer and one song that tops five minutes, mixed in with a whole bunch more balls-to-the-wall rock. Baby steps.
Perhaps as a sign of their new influences outside the punk/classic rock spheres, Japandroids’ new single contains a B-side cover of Talking Heads’ debut single “Love Goes To Building On Fire.” Their version sounds epic and distorted, a steady build that finally bursts into an massive guitar climax. They haven’t performed it live yet, but they should; it would fit right in with their massive, holler-along shows.
The band is currently on tour with The Hold Steady frontman Craig Finn opening. They’ve been ending each set with a different cover, a joint version of “(I’m) Stranded” by Australian rock band The Saints. Though today perhaps not as well known stateside as the Ramones or Sex Pistols, they remain incredibly influential; Bruce Springsteen covered another song of theirs on his last album.Continue reading »
Though they may not have the universal name recognitions of Carly Rae Jepsen, for certain contingents of indie hipsters and punk brawlers alike, Japandroids released the song of the summer with “The House That Heaven Built.” The fist-pump-along anthem inspired many a beer raised high and that wall-of-rock power would be hard to top. So Beat Radio’s Brian Sendrowitz takes things in the opposite direction, stripping all bombast away for a folkie campfire strum.Continue reading »
The cover-blogging-internet-music-webosphere is exploding. Or imploding. Or just ploding generally. Basically… a lot of new covers have cropped up in the past 24 hours.
The Bon Iver-featuring Gayngs take a leisurely stroll through the recently-incarcerated George Michael’s “One More Try” with help from Har Mar Superstar. The Morning Benders trot a bit faster through a Ram classic for a new mixtape. Japandroids throw a PJ Harvey cover on the b-side of their new seven inch. Phospherescent hits the heavens with a faithful “Across the Universe.” Example unleashes his inner teenie-bopper with the 274th cover of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream.”Continue reading »