Anyone familiar with Manchester Orchestra knows that they are no strangers to the cover song. Even more, lead singer Andy Hull has an astounding ability to turn popular indie-pop and rock songs into acoustic masterpieces. We’ve previously posted covers from both Hull and Manchester Orchestra. It’d be impossible to write Hull off as just the lead singer of your typical indie-rock band. He’s actually the front-man of not only Manchester Orchestra, but two other side projects: the folk group Right Away, Great Captain and Bad Books, which he performs in with folk musician Kevin Devine.
“Ghost in This House” was recorded by American country music group Shenandoah and released in September 1990. Almost a decade later, bluegrass-country singer, songwriter and fiddler Alison Krauss was at a Michael Johnson concert in Nashville when it hit her. “He was performing a cover of “Ghost in This House” and I remember thinking, that’s the worst thing I have ever heard in my entire life…we have to do it too!” she said when performing it on Live. Krauss then covered it on her 1999 album Forget About It.
What a difference tempo and volume can make! My Morning Jacket’s “Anytime,” from their critically acclaimed album, Z, is an ultra-caffeinated, bouncy tune that seems to be about not much of anything. When fellow southerners Manchester Orchestra get a hold of it, though, the aura of the song changes. Although Andy Hull’s voice is extremely reminiscent of MMJ’s Jim James, he softly coos, rather than shouts, the words. The distorted guitar becomes a strummed acoustic, and the pace is slowed to lullaby speed.