John Vanderslice has been cranking out solid indie rock for over a decade, but always seems to lurk just under the radar. His latest album, out today, features a special treat we hope will win him a new fan or two: a cover of Atlas Sound’s “Walkabout.” The tune comes from the exclusive Amazon package for White Wilderness (on sale there for $3.99).
The original song came about from Atlas Sound’s Bradford Cox‘s spontaneous jam with Animal Collective’s Noah Lennox, making it a particularly unexpected cover choice. When it first dropped, Cox described its genesis to Pitchfork:
I toured for a period in Europe with Animal Collective, whose band dynamic was very inspirational to be around. On the bus, we often played improvised iPod games. We would take turns formulating a theme or unifying concept and then play three songs. The goal would be for everyone to try and figure out the theme. During one of these games, someone played ‘What Am I Going to Do’ by the Dovers. I was amazed at the hook– a weird organ thing with drums and electric bass. I mentioned to Noah that someone should really sample that riff. He agreed and he taught me a little about sampling and matching up beats. This ended up as the collaborative effort ‘Walkabout.’
Not much info from Vanderslice on why he chose the song, though he notes on his blog that he recorded it in his basement with composer Minna Choi and her Magik Magik Orchestra, who appear on the entire album. Where the original is all spacey electro-jam, Vanderslice unearths a lighthearted folk-pop core. Whether you know the original or not, this irresistible harpsichord romp gives you the full package. Listen to it below, then buy the full album at Amazon MP3.
John Vanderslice – Walkabout (Atlas Sound cover)