Taking 90s hip hop songs and doing a current indie cover of it has become a bit of a worn out novelty, especially the acoustic take. Luckily, Chicago indie rockers Fort Frances go beyond the expected with their latest in a series of covers. Over the last six months we have seen them release great covers of Beck’s “Guess I’m Doing Fine” and Paul Simon’s “The Only Living Boy in New York.” Now the band has re-invented a classic summer party song.
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.
This Week on Bandcamp rounds up our favorite covers to hit the site in the past seven days.
A somewhat mellower set today, perfect for the official start of summer. The first few tracks take us into folk and folk-rock, but things get a bit dreamier at the end on covers of David Byrne/Brian Eno and, of all people, Will Smith. Party in the city when the heat is on!
Song of the Day posts one cool cover every morning. Catch up on past installments here.
Does anyone really love Will Smith? Does anyone hate him either? In his acting career, he seems to have run straight down the middle of the likeability meter. He’s no Tom Hanks, but he’s no Russell Crowe either. For a guy who started out telling a cabbie, “Yo homes, smell you later,” that’s not too bad.
His rap career, I would wager, garners a few more snickers. His track record of releasing hit singles to soundtrack his films notwithstanding, anyone who titles his albums Big Willie Style and Willenium earns himself a little disdain. However, all ill will (get it?) vanishes upon hearing today’s song. New York musicians/1950s clothing models Pearl and the Beard wander city streets singing the most adorable covers you’ve ever heard, Will Smith hit after Will Smith hit. Here come the girls in pastel!