Jul 012011

This Week on Bandcamp rounds up our favorite covers to hit the site in the past seven days.

We bring you five instantly accessible tracks today, perfect to groove to over the holiday weekend. Pirate-holler Screamin’ Jay Hawkins, folk Vampire Weekend, and pop-punk Eddie Money are sure to make you the hit of your 4th of July BBQ. Download those and more below.

As we mentioned not long ago, covers of this Chris Isaak song never cease. And we’re glad. The latest puts delicate singing over an ambient electro production, finding a beautiful balance between avant-garde production and singing that could have come from 1982.

To their fans, Manchester band James should have been bigger. Sure, they’ve sold 25 million albums to date, but many argue that huge Britpop sound should have sold 250 million. “Crescendo” may not be the most obvious place to start spreading the Gospel of James, but this bouncy cover will bring you up to speed.

Lord knows you’ve heard this song enough, but this cover gives it (and you) a much-needed kick in the ass. Byron Blocker and the Offbeats growl and swing their way through a brash pirate-punk rave every bit as menacing as Screamin’ Jay intended.

Like many of Vampire Weekend’s best songs, “I Think Ur a Contra” deals obliquely with what singer Ezra Koenig calls “first world guilt.” This plucked ballad offers no fancy ornamentation, bringing the lyrics to the fore in a beautifully restrained performance and production.

Boston bands Life on Hold and Mr. Farenheit came together to record this bouncy pop-punk Eddie Money cover. With the in-your-face guitars, this version of the 1986 hit could easily find its way onto modern rock radio. The hilariously bad lyrics would fit right in.

Check out previous installments here.

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