With the possible exception of Martin Scorsese, no movie director has been more closely identified with his soundtracks than Wes Anderson. He has consistently selected songs by well-known artists that, through no fault of their own, have become three-quarters forgotten over the years, and reintroduced them to the world as the classics they had always been. If someone calls a song a prime candidate for the next Wes Anderson soundtrack (Guilty!), an instant and accurate picture is created. The soundtracks show a cohesion that’s rare in these days of we-want-a-hit soundtracks, where the earmarked smash doesn’t play until the final credits have started rolling, and they have become high points in the experience of watching Anderson’s movies. Now the American Laundromat Records label has collected covers of some of those high points on I Saved Latin! A Tribute to Wes Anderson, resulting in the best tribute album of the year.
The second season of Portlandia premieres on IFC tomorrow (watch the first episode here) and last month, stars Carrie Brownstein and Fred Armisen toured a music/video/chat variety show around the country to promote it. At their San Francisco performance, local duo Thao + Mirah joined for the finale: a cover of Salt-N-Pepa’s 1986 smash “Push It.” Telekinesis’ Michael Benjamin Lerner plays drums.
We first caught wind of Please, Please, Please: A Tribute To The Smiths back in March and next week it finally arrives. From the sound of the first three covers, it’ll be worth snagging.
September 24th marks the 20th anniversary of Nirvana’s decade-defining Nevermind and Spin is starting the celebration early. Their next issue pays tribute to the landmark record with an accompanying compilation featuring covers of every song on the album. The last one they did, for Prince’s Purple Rain, earned a Best Cover Album nod from us, so we have high hopes for this one as well.
After Superchunk frontman Mac McCaughan performed covers of Bruce Springsteen’s “Bobby Jean” and Jay Reatard’s “My Shadow” and the full band recorded a John Cale Christmas song, it’s finally time for Superchunk themselves to get the covers treatment. Seattle’s indie wunderkind Telekinesis (aka Michael Benjamin Lerner) just released a cover of Superchunk favorite “Nu Bruises.”
Another week, another indie band squeezes into the A.V. Club’s “small round room” and picks a song from the list of 25 for A.V. Undercover. This week, Telekinesis, aka. drummer/singer Michael Benjamin Lerner and friends, take on Belle & Sebastian’s twee pop classic “Like Dylan in the Movies.” Lerner reports that they had thought of covering “Boxcar” by Jawbreaker, but “that would sound too much like our band.”