Jun 262013
 

Five Good Covers presents five cross-genre reinterpretations of an oft-covered song.

Hard to believe, but almost ten years have passed since Kelis released her biggest hit, “Milkshake.” Harder still to believe, it didn’t peak on the charts until December of 2003 – it seems like the quintessential summer song, full of the life and braggadocio of youth who’ve got it and know how to flaunt it.

Memorable as the music and Kelis’s vocal are, it’s that opening line that drives its hook the deepest into your brain. Odds are quite good that nobody had ever spoken the words “My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard” in that order before, and the sheer strangeness of that boast made a distinct impression on all who heard it. It’s the sort of line that can be adapted by any musician into any genre and still make an impact. Some may choose to mock (we’re looking at you, Richard Cheese), but more are inclined to turn the song toward their own means, and the results tend to turn out to be just as head-swerving as Kelis’s. See for yourself…
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Dec 212012
 

Adele dominated the cover song landscape in 2011, but Two-Aught-Twelve saw no similar galvanizing figure. Yes Lana Del Rey got covered a lot, but Leonard Cohen and Arcade Fire also seemed to garner an unexpected landslide of great covers (and speaking of landslides, so did Fleetwood Mac). “Call Me Maybe” was a huge hit that didn’t lead to much in the way of classic covers, and few seem to have even bothered attempting the Korean raps on “Gangnam Style.”

Which means that cover songs in 2012 were more diverse, ambitious, and left-field than ever before. A given YouTube search or Hype Machine browse would be as likely to turn up forgotten hits or underappreciated songwriters as it would the latest Top 40 smash. Find a sampling of all the diversity in Cover Me’s official Best Cover Songs of 2012 countdown. Start with #40-31 on the next page, and check back daily as we’ll be adding more til we hit #1.

Jan 052012
 

Kelis is best remembered in the States for her 2003 hit “Milkshake,” but overseas she’s had a string of Top 10 hits. One such song is “Millionaire,” her 2004 song with André 3000, which hit #3 in Britain yet didn’t even dip a toe in the American charts. Though they hail from Miami, Awesome New Republik aka. ANR seem a bit more hip to Kelis’ work outside of double entendres. Their label Neon Gold (home to Passion Pit and Ellie Goulding) filmed the duo performing their spaced-out cover of the song last month and it’s a joy to watch. Continue reading »

Jul 222011
 

While some cover artists re-interpret known songs, Alyson Greenfield is one who goes for full on re-inventions. Her new EP of glockenspiel and piano-centric hip hop covers, entitled Rock Out with Your Glockenspiel Out, offers exercises in juxtaposition that work on many levels. Not only is she using an instrument straight out of third grade music class to play songs with adult lyrical themes, but her shimmering, simple sound and inflected vocals oppose almost every convention of hip-hop. This version of Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” shows her angle, putting such an unexpected twist on an otherwise fairly conventional track that it even transcends appeals to novelty. Continue reading »

Feb 182011
 

This Week on Bandcamp rounds up our favorite covers to hit the site in the past seven days.

With Valentine’s Day this week, Bandcamp got hit with a wave of lovers’ covers. The holiday may be over, but, as we saw yesterday, romantic covers remain in vogue. So we offer some today. Well, three are romantic. The other two are decidedly not. One honors the revolution in Egypt and the other is about…milkshakes. And nothing else. Continue reading »