Jun 122015
 

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

Reginald Maurice Ball was born 74 years ago today. Two and a half decades later, he took the stage name of Reg Presley. He may not have been the most famous person to take his identity from the King (right, Mr. Costello?), but he and his band, the Troggs, had as great an impact on rock and roll as anybody, thanks to the lewd, crude attitude of “Wild Thing.”

But while the Troggs were masters of expressing primal urges, they were awfully good with gentle, melodic pop as well. Presley can take credit for this, as he wrote most of the band’s material (“Wild Thing” being a notable exception). Result: the band has a far richer back catalog than the general public realizes, and if today’s artists were to plunder its caves, they would make some valuable finds.
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Dec 192013
 

I’m not sure there were more great cover songs this year than any other. But there were more good ones.

What I mean by that is, the average quality of the covers we come across in the time we’ve been around has risen, rather dramatically. Whether they’re iTunes homepage singles or some guy emailing us his Bandcamp, more cover songs in 2013 avoid the old pitfalls than ever before. They don’t sound like they were recorded in a cereal box, substitute ear-bleeding volume for actual creativity, or – the worst cover sin of all – try to carbon-copying the original. With the ease of production and distribution available now, artists seemed to record covers only when they felt they had something to add, and do a halfway decent job committing those ideas to 1s and 0s. Continue reading »

May 222013
 

Mikal Cronin, a member of several acts including Ty Segall’s live band, is known for his garage, fuzzy, beach rock sensibility. Who knew the nonstop musician was such a softy at heart? As a way of staying connected with his girlfriend while touring, he has recorded two soft, almost too-adorable covers: “I’m Gonna Be” by Proclaimers and “Kiss Me” by Sixpence None The Richer. Continue reading »

Aug 252011
 

Quickies rounds up new can’t-miss covers. Download ‘em below.

San Francisco indie-pop purveyors Lemonade began making blog buzz with last year’s Pure Moods EP. Now they dig up “The Place Where You Belong,” making a lively jam of the 1994 Shai single everyone vividly remembers. Wait, don’t tell us you forgot the Beverly Hills Cop III soundtrack…
MP3: Lemonade – The Place Where You Belong (Shai cover) Continue reading »