“Stop” has always been one of my favorite tracks from the Spice Girls’ classic period. Originally appearing on the group’s 1997 sophomore album Spiceworld, the song was a throwback to the early Motown sounds of the Supremes. As one whose tastes always skewed retro, I liked how “Stop” highlighted the connection between the ‘90s and ‘60s girl groups. Though it wasn’t their biggest hit at the time, “Stop” has endured; it’s currently the Spice Girls’ second-most-streamed track on Spotify.
The song recently got a rock n’ roll overhaul courtesy of the Struts. The British group released a power-pop cover of the track that would have been a good fit for The Ed Sullivan Show. The band kept the song’s original pounding backbeat in place. They then infused it with hard-rockin’ guitar and lead vocalist Luke Spiller’s Mick Jagger-style vocals. With the cover, they channelled another popular ‘60s tradition: male rock bands covering girl group songs. Think the Beatles’ version of the Marvelettes “Please Mr. Postman,” the Beach Boys’ reworking of the Crystals’ “Then He Kissed Me,” or Vanilla Fudge’s take on the Supremes’ “You Keep Me Hangin’ On.”
The Struts released a social-distancing friendly video “Live from the Living Room.” It featured members of the group singing, playing and dancing along to the song either alone or with one of their dogs. Sure, these are serious times, but it’s still good to “Stop” and have a little fun as well.
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